FLASHBACK: Bette Midler Once Accused Geraldo Rivera of Groping


An old clip from a Barbara Walters interview might be coming back to haunt Geraldo Rivera.

Rivera took a lot of heat Wednesday for tweeting his defense of newly-fired NBC anchor Matt Lauer. The Fox News personality called Lauer’s alleged actions (which reportedly included the former Today host exposing himself to a woman) “courtship,” and said that the news is a “flirty business.”

In the wake of the firestorm the longtime TV personality made for himself, a clip of a 1991 interview Barbara Walters did with Bette Midler has been circulating around the web.

Walters asked Midler to react to Rivera’s claim in an autobiography that the two of them had an “affair.” Initially, Midler laughed it off, saying that Rivera’s “penis went to his head.”

Midler then recalled the time she met him in the early ’70s. She alleges that while shooting an interview, Rivera and his producer “pushed” her into a bathroom, “broke two poppers and pushed them under [her] nose,” and groped her.

“I did not offer myself up on the altar of Geraldo Rivera. He was unseemly, his behavior was unseemly.”

Before moving on, she told Walters had she known he was going to become a “slimy talk show host,” she “wouldn’t have let him in the room” and that these things could “come back to haunt” her.

Watch the clip above, via ABC.

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