Fox News' Geraldo Rivera tweets sexual harassment allegations 'may be criminalizing courtship'

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Earlier in the day, Rivera, a Fox News contributor and former talk-show host, apologized for several tweets he wrote on Wednesday that defended Matt Lauer after the NBC News host was sacked over sexual harassment allegations.

Shortly after Geraldo Rivera defended fired "Today" host Matt Lauer against sexual misconduct allegations, critics resurfaced a 1991 interview in which Bette Midler accuses the Fox News commentator of pushing her into a bathroom and groping her. Walters, however, assures her its ok to go forward. "I'm going to get in trouble".

Rivera, a former TV host and Fox News correspondent, was defending Lauer, who was sacked from NBC after the reports of inappropriate behaviour became public. Groped me. I did not offer myself up on the altar of Geraldo Rivera.

After Rivera posted his original tweets, Fox News was quick to comment that they "do not reflect the views of Fox News or its management".

In the clip, Midler says Rivera and his producer came to interview her in the 1970s, and then drugged and groped her.

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A rep for Midler told ABC News that she had no further comment beyond her tweet.

"Reaction to my tweets today on #sexharassment makes clear I didn't sufficiently explain that this is a horrendous problem long hidden", Rivera tweeted in the evening, hours after expounding on the gray areas of sexual behavior. In it, Rivera wrote about Midler, "We were in the bathroom, preparing for the interview, and at some point I put my hands on her breasts". In his first public statement, Lauer said he is "truly sorry" to anyone he hurt by his words and actions. Big-bucks settlements mean some people might be motivated by "more than justice", he said.

"This issue is so red hot right now there is no room for any thought or opinion but hang em high", Rivera said.

She also tweeted "Me too", in support of sexual harassment victims around the world, and started gaining traction after ex-Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein was revealed to be exerting inappropriate behaviour on women who wanted to appear in his films. "We were troubled by his comments and are addressing them with him".

Fox has dismissed two high-profile men over sexual misconduct allegations involving their behavior while at the news channel, host Bill O'Reilly in April and CEO Roger Ailes, who was sacked in 2016 and died earlier this year.