The Talk's Elaine Welteroth is responding to a leaked conversation between her and former co-host Sharon Osbourne. The audio came after Mrs. O's argument with Sheryl Underwood on March 10, during which Osbourne defended Piers Morgan's controversial statements on Meghan Markle's struggles. Daily Mail, where Morgan is a columnist, introduced the clips four months after the dust-up, and former Teen Vogue editor-in-chief Welteroth is expressing her dissatisfaction with how producers wanted the conversation initiated.
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In the audio, notes People, Welteroth consoled Osbourne. Now, in a statement to Entertainment Tonight, the journalist revealed how she didn't like how the topic was presented and also explained what took place behind-the-scenes between her and Osbourne.
I thought we had closed the painful, public chapter of the controversy related to the March 10th show. Today, however, I learned that my private comments made moments after the incident from a place of compassion to a then-colleague (the most senior level co-host on The Talk) were recorded —without my consent or knowledge—and shared with the media.
What I am sharing today is consistent with what I have already shared on camera. Nothing has changed. It is not news that I did not call Sharon a racist and it is certainly not news that the way the show unfolded caught us all by surprise. None of us wanted that day to go how it did and I do not regret sharing these feelings in a private conversation with a colleague. I welcome fair, constructive dialogue and I am no stranger to tough conversations about race. But I will not be vilified for telling the truth, on or off-air.
To set the record straight, it was not a hot mic—I was unlawfully recorded without consent. And I never filed a complaint with HR against Sharon Osbourne or anyone else. I am disheartened, however, that my kindness has been taken out of context and weaponized in an attempt to absolve responsibility for someone else’s actions.
Read her full statement here.