After calling Fox News host Bill O'Reilly "the king" of the business, MSNBC's Rachel Maddow went for the jugular on Wednesday night, mercilessly ridiculing O'Reilly for reportedly exaggerating stories throughout his career.
The attack on the Fox host's credibility started with a Feb. 9 article in the Nation magazine that questioned O'Reilly's reporting on the civil war in El Salvador. Soon after, a report by Mother Jones cast doubt on his claims to have been in a "war-zone" in Argentina, and kicked off a wave of fact-checking.
On Wednesday night, Maddow ran through other things that have come to light, such as the host's tendency to say he has "seen," say, people shot in the head, only to later clarify that he merely saw pictures of violence.
Then, Maddow leaned in.
"What [O'Reilly and Fox] haven't touched at all thus far is one where there appears to be no plausible, innocent explanation for what Mr. O'Reilly said," she said.
She ran a clip of O'Reilly on "Fox & Friends" repeating a story he has told in multiple books: That in 1977, he was on the scene in Florida at the suicide of George de Mohrenschildt, a friend of President John F. Kennedy's assassin.
Then, Maddow played audio tapes
"Mr. O'Reilly does not seem to have been standing on the porch listening to the gun shot ring out as the guy killed himself," Maddow said.
"I mean, not unless that guy's porch was long enough to extend from that house in Florida all the way into Texas where Bill O'Reilly was working as a Dallas reporter," she added.
Maddow noted that she had reached out to Fox News about the stories, but was given an interesting response: Information on Bill O'Reilly's "great" ratings.
Maddow burst out laughing.
“Your ratings are great! I’ve seen your ratings shoot my ratings right in the head,” Maddow said. “Well, I’ve seen pictures of that, I should say."