Looking back on her feud with Donald Trump, Fox News host Megyn Kelly said she’s learned that “we may have overestimated his anger management skills.”
The primetime cable news anchor ended up on the receiving end of Trump’s ire after the first Republican presidential debate back in August. At the start of that event, Kelly a moderator, quoted some of the GOP frontrunner’s most disparaging comments about women and asked if those remarks would cripple him in the general election. After the debate, Trump launched a series of personal attacks at Kelly, while she, for the most part, declined to engage.
Speaking at Fortune‘s Most Powerful Women summit in Washington, D.C., Kelly explained both her question and how she responded to the fallout. “The reason I asked that was not a comment on Megyn Kelly,” she said. “It was a comment on his electability, and what he’s likely to hear from Hillary Clinton should he be the nominee, and you’re already hearing that from Hillary Clinton. That’s what I get paid to do: anticipate the candidate’s weaknesses and poke ‘em. That’s our job, and it does require a certain amount of fearlessness … But it’s not like I was looking to make an example out of Donald Trump.”
Kelly said the first round of questions that the Fox News moderators posed to the candidates during the debate all followed the same electability theme behind the question to Trump. “No one was given a pass,” she said.
And as Trump turned to Twitter and interviews with other outlets to attack Kelly, she decided it was “better to take the high road.”
“It did not behoove any of us to get engaged in a war with a presidential candidate,” Kelly said. “I need to cover this man as a journalist; Fox News needs to cover this man as journalists, so there was no upside.”