‘Embarrassed’ Geraldo Rivera apologizes for ‘tawdry’ memoir

Geraldo Rivera is apologizing for a memoir published a quarter-century ago that recounts sexual experiences he says he’s now “embarrassed” about.

In a tweet on Friday, Rivera, now a Fox News Channel reporter, cites his “tawdry” book and what he calls “consensual events” it recounts. He describes its tone as “distasteful” and “disrespectful.” He says he’s “profoundly sorry” to the women involved and to anyone offended by it.

The book, titled “Exposing Myself,” was published in 1991.

Rivera’s post follows a tweet on Thursday by Bette Midler renewing an allegation of being drugged and groped by Rivera and his producer colleague in the 1970s.

In the tweet posted by the actress-singer, she included a video from a 1991 interview with Barbara Walters in which she first made her allegation against Rivera.

In that clip, Midler hesitates in recounting what she alleges happened with Rivera during his visit to interview her in the early 1970s, saying it will get her in trouble. “Get in a little trouble,” Walters encourages her.

After Rivera and the producer left their TV crew in another room, they “pushed me into my bathroom. They broke two poppers and pushed them under my nose and proceeded to grope me,” Midler told Walters. “Poppers” is slang for the alkyl nitrites class of drugs.

“I did not offer myself up on the altar of Geraldo Rivera,” said Midler, calling his behaviour “unseemly.”

In her tweet on Thursday, Midler called for an apology from Rivera, and added the harassment-solidarity hashtag “#MeToo.”

Rivera doesn’t mention Midler in his tweet.

There was no immediate comment from Rivera’s current employer, Fox News Channel. The network has dismissed two high-profile men over sexual misconduct allegations involving their behaviour while at the news channel, host Bill O’Reilly in April and CEO Roger Ailes, who was fired in 2016 and died earlier this year.

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