News Anchors You'd Never Want To Meet In Real Life

The following references sexual assault allegations and suicide.

Back when it was impossible to access news at any time, anywhere, in the palm of our hands, we trusted news anchors to tell the truth, inform us of relevant stories, and occasionally, to entertain. But nowadays, trust in the media and television journalists is at a record low, according to a 2022 Gallup report. And perhaps this is for good reason. With many TV journalists using fear-based tactics to gain viewership and interjecting largely opinion-based information, the reliability of the news has undoubtedly declined. "It isn't just political partisanship that's driving this distrust. There are lots of people who don't like seeing opinion in their news and having all of that mixed together," Online News Association President Mandy Jenkins explained to Pulitzer.

Many news anchors have strong on-air personalities and can come off as abrasive people you probably wouldn't want to rub elbows with. Other anchors that have made their way to this list, however, seemed pleasant enough on camera but were later revealed to be less than trustworthy in real life. Let's take a closer look at news anchors you'd never want to meet.

Tucker Carlson has no chill

Tucker Carlson's become one of the most polarizing news anchors in contemporary history. While he clearly has a lot of loyal viewers he also has a large share of people who find him infuriating. Enough that a stranger might heckle him. As a matter of fact, in 2021, a person did approach Carlson at a store and say, "You are the worst human being known to mankind." As noted in The Guardian, a video of the interaction went viral.

There's a host of reasons why the host isn't popular with everyone. On an episode of "Fresh Air," New York Times reporter Nicholas Confessore shared that he and his colleagues found Carlson's show may be the most racist news program. What's more, Carlson has a tenuous relationship with the truth. As he admitted on a 2021 episode of "The Rubin Report" (via Media Matters), "I lie if I'm really cornered or something. ... I try never to lie on TV. I just don't — you know, I don't like lying. I certainly do it, you know, out of weakness or whatever."

Apparently, Carlson wasn't always so intense. A childhood friend told Business Insider, "He was a cool southern California surfer kid. ... And then something must have happened in his life that turned him into this evil diabolical s***head he is today." It's safe to say he's now about as far as one can be from a chill surfer and would probably not be very enjoyable to hang out with.

Matt Lauer was secretly shady

Matt Lauer was once famous as the wholesome host of the "Today" show. That is, until he was accused of sexual assault and inappropriate behavior. In 2019, co-worker Brooke Nevils accused Lauer of rape. Lauer denied the claims and said that the affair was consensual but even if that were true, his actions consistently displayed inappropriate and predatory behavior in the workplace. "Matt Lauer's conduct was appalling, horrific and reprehensible," NBC News said in a statement to Variety.

Sexual misconduct aside, others claimed Lauer was an inconsiderate co-worker. "I did this special with him and we are traveling and I had a cold sore on my lip and I heard him say to Bryant Gumbel, 'She has this really ugly cold sore on her lip,' like that was something to be ashamed of. He was just really cruel," a former NBC employee explained to Variety. We're guessing you probably wouldn't want to have a run-in with someone who apparently displays this type of behavior.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Megyn Kelly is proud to be a 'soulless lawyer'

There are plenty of celebrities who can't stand Megyn Kelly — and perhaps for good reasons considering the former Fox News contributor and NBC host has made her fair share of inflammatory comments. Time after time, she has dismissed police brutality and has said a host of racist things in the process. Kelly also insisted both Jesus and Santa Claus were white (for the record, Santa Claus is a myth and historians have pointed out that Jesus was not a white man). Not to mention that her "Today Show" hour got canceled because she defended blackface.

Beyond that, she's also been called a bully. After Naomi Osaka withdrew from The French Open in 2021, Kelly took to Twitter to criticize the young tennis star. Kelly joined in on sports journalist Clay Travis's tweets that mocked Osaka's mental health concerns. "It's such bullying and it's so unnecessary," Sports Illustrated editor M.J. Day said on the "People Every Day" podcast (via Newsweek). Osaka responded in a now-deleted tweet, telling Kelly that as a journalist, she should "do better."

But none of this should be surprising. "I'm a soulless lawyer," Kelly admitted to The Daily Beast. So unless hanging out with people who admit to being soulless is your vibe, you probably wouldn't want to meet her.

Charlie Rose reportedly 'terrified' colleagues

Charlie Rose was the host of "Charlie Rose" on PBS and "CBS This Morning." Take note of the past tense. As The New York Times reported at the time, Rose was fired from both gigs in 2017 after sexual misconduct allegations came to light. Based on the accounts of his former co-workers, Rose sounds like someone you wouldn't want to spend too much time with in real life. By 2018, over 30 women had come forward with allegations, with tales of despicable incidents ranging from the 1980s to 2017.

The Washington Post reported that some of the women who had come forward also said he was a volatile colleague. One of the accusers noted, "Everybody is terrified of him. ... He creates this environment of constant fear. And then he'll shine a spotlight on you and make you feel amazing." One of his former assistants, Sydney McNeal, told The Washington Post that working for him was "toxic," adding, "[it] made me question my intelligence, dignity and worth as a human being almost every day."

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Laura Ingraham is no stranger to derogatory comments

Like many Fox News anchors, Laura Ingraham has made her fair share of divisive and racist comments and has been accused of being an unfair bully. In 2018, she ended an episode of her series "Ingraham Angle" by declaring that the demographic changes in America due to immigration were a "national emergency," per CNN. The whole bit came off as discriminatory, pitting an "us" (which is presumably to the older, mostly white audience of Fox News) against a "them" (Americans who aren't white).

Possibly one of Ingraham's worst moments was when she mocked a school shooting survivor, David Hogg, who had been publicly advocating for stricter gun control after the Parkland shooting. In a tweet, Ingraham shared an article about universities that Hogg had applied to and added, "David Hogg Rejected By Four Colleges To Which He Applied and whines about it." She later apologized for the tweet, but only after she was dropped by several big advertisers. Hogg addressed the tweet in an interview with CNN and said, "No matter who somebody is, no matter how big or powerful they may seem, a bully is a bully, and it's important that you stand up to them. ... It's disturbing to know that somebody can bully so many people and just get away with it, especially to the level that she did." We're guessing a grown woman cyberbullying a teenager who has survived an extremely traumatic event is the type of person you probably wouldn't want to spend time with.

Geraldo Rivera's messy reputation

Sometimes it's hard to imagine how some of these news professionals in power get away with such bad behavior behind the scenes. Perhaps news anchors are often working to protect each other. At least, that seemed to be the situation when Fox News' Geraldo Rivera jumped to Matt Lauer's defense in 2017. Rivera tweeted, "News is a flirty business & it seems like current epidemic of #SexHarassmentAllegations may be criminalizing courtship & conflating it w predation." 

Though he apologized for the tweet, people were quick to bring up some less-than-savory situations Rivera had been involved in. Particularly groping Bette Midler. In a 1991 interview, Midler told Barbara Walters, "Geraldo and his producer came to do an interview with me in the '70s–in the early '70s ... He and his producer left the crew in the other room, they pushed me into my bathroom, they broke two poppers and pushed them under my nose, and proceeded to grope me. ... He was unseemly." Years later, Rivera tweeted that he remembered the interaction differently, but apologized to Midler. 

Rivera was also accused of being racist when he made an insensitive remark about the murder of teenager Trayvon Martin. "I think the hoodie is as much responsible for Trayvon Martin's death as George Zimmerman was," Rivera said, per Politico. As you can imagine, the internet was up in arms about the offensive statement. Rivera eventually offered an apology. 

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Bill O'Reilly is said to be 'hot-tempered'

For a time, Bill O'Reilly was one of Fox News's biggest stars. In 2016, his show "The O'Reilly Factor," was the number one cable news show. But that all came crashing down in 2017 when O'Reilly was fired from Fox News due to sexual harassment allegations. On air, he was known for his often fiery demeanor and insensitive comments and as it turns out, he wasn't much better off air. According to The New York Times, "[accusers] have complained about a wide range of behavior, including verbal abuse, lewd comments, unwanted advances." What's more, they alleged he made inappropriate phone calls. At the time O'Reilly maintained he didn't commit any misconduct. 

What's more, O'Reilly was long rumored to be someone with a raging temper who could lose his cool very easily, particularly on female colleagues. A former employee, Theresa McKeown explained to HuffPost, "I know that there were women in the office that he would bring to tears ... He was definitely hot-tempered and he was impatient, so when I was going to be dealing with him, I was so afraid. I never wanted to give him a reason to yell at me." No one likes to hang around people who make you feel like you're walking on eggshells.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Rick Sanchez has been called 'cocky' and 'crude'

Ideally, you'd probably want your news anchor to take the job of reporting the truth seriously. But that wasn't always the case for Rick Sanchez, who hosted "Rick's List" on CNN and has worked for Fox News. CNN producer Chez Pazienza (and a friend of Sanchez's) provided an insight for what Sanchez was like on set in an opinion piece for Business Insider. According to Pazienza, Sanchez once said of the rest of the news team, "They take this stuff so f***ing seriously — like we're doing brain surgery or something." Pazienza went on to add that Sanchez then grabbed his own crotch and said their work isn't that serious. "That was Rick all the way: brash, cocky, impulsive, occasionally crude as hell, with almost no knack for subtlety or concern for the trivialities of decorum," Pazienza wrote. 

When Sanchez called Jon Stewart a "bigot" during an interview on a Sirius XM radio show (via TheWrap), the host, Pete Dominick, pointed out that Stewart is a minority because he's Jewish. Sanchez laughed this off and said, "I'm telling you that everybody who runs CNN is a lot like Stewart and a lot of people who run all the other networks are a lot like Stewart and to imply that somehow the people in this country who are Jewish are an oppressed minority, yeah." This antisemitic comment led to CNN firing Sanchez. After the fact, Sanchez apologized; Stewart told Larry King he didn't agree with the decision to fire Sanchez.

Brian Williams is a self-proclaimed egoist

We all have that one friend who exaggerates their stories or fabricates details to make themselves seem more important. Perhaps it's only human to have that urge in social situations every now and then. It's not the most likable quality in anyone but it's especially problematic for a news anchor such as Brian Williams. The former "NBC Nightly News" host was notorious for fabricating details and positioning himself at the center of the story. Per Politico, he once said he was present the night the Berlin Wall came down though it was later discovered that he hadn't arrived until the day after — and that was just one of his stories that didn't add up. His most famous lie came in 2015 when he told a story on-air about a helicopter he was in during the Iraq War that was shot down. This turned out to be a completely fabricated account. Williams was suspended from NBC after his lies came to light.

To his credit, Williams owned up to the lies. "This came from clearly a bad place, a bad urge inside me. This was clearly ego driven, the desire to better my role in a story I was already in," Williams said in an interview with "Today." "What happened is the fault of a whole host of other sins. What happened is my ego getting the better of me, to put myself in a better light, to appear better than I was." 

Nancy Grace's interrogation style is intense

For many years, Nancy Grace had her own show on HLN titled "Nancy Grace" until 2016. As Jonathan Turley, a law professor at George Washington University, pointed out to The New York Times, her show attempted to be part journalism and part true crime. "I think she has managed to demean both professions with her hype, rabid persona, and sensational analysis. ... Some part of the public takes her seriously, and her show erodes the respect for basic rights," Turley explained.

Grace was often interrogatory during her interviews. As recounted by ABC News, after she questioned Melinda Duckett, a mother of a missing son, in 2006, Duckett died by suicide 24 hours later. Duckett's family alleged Grace's interview led to Duckett's suicide and sued the TV personality. In an interview with ABC News, Grace offered up a harsh response: "If anything, I would suggest that guilt made her commit suicide."

But her intensity wasn't just a front for the camera. Behind the scenes, she was allegedly rude and often explosive. A former employee, Mary Cella, discussed her time working for the TV journalist in a thread on Twitter. "My mother died a month before I started working for Nancy and still the worst day of my life was just a random Thursday working for her," she wrote. She went on to allege that Grace once threw shoes at her and yelled at her about a box of tissues.

If you or anyone you know is having suicidal thoughts, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline​ by dialing 988 or by calling 1-800-273-TALK (8255)​.