Ms. Walter's View of Rosie

What Everyone is Talking About

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NEW YORK ( -- Ratings are up over at ABC's "The View," which means Rosie O'Donnell has so far delivered the boost everyone expected. But she's also delivered a couple of other things, like opinions that radical Christians are as bad as radical Islamists, and that Oprah Winfrey is maybe just a tiny bit gay. Founder and co-host Barbara Walters -- who The New York Times noted this morning has moved her seat to sit to the far right of Rosie -- wants to assure everyone she is more than capable of handling Rosie's controversial opinions.
Rosie O'Donnell
Rosie O'Donnell Credit: AP

For one, she's already cut Rosie's legs out from under her, literally. Here's what Rosie wrote on her blog shortly after her Sept. 5 debut on "The View."

my torso is so long
i look like gigantor the spaceage robot
next to ms walters
they cut 3 inches off the chair
by day 2

But Ms. Walters wants to make it clear she is not going to be overshadowed by Rosie, literally or figuratively, and says she has reined in Rosie as needed, putting the kibosh on any bashing. "Rosie's opinions are her own. They're very strong," Ms. Walters told the Times. "And I don't mind opinions. But I don't want us to be bashing anybody. We've talked about that, and Rosie is very conscious of it." In fact, on several shows, you can see the other co-hosts jumping in and talking over Rosie to change the subject when she veers to close to a topic better left unexplored.

One group Rosie is not bashing, and one reason the producers at "The View" were sold on bringing her on board, is advertisers. Already she has given the audience Keebler cookies, complete with a song and dance with the elves, as well as a Royal Caribbean cruise, a TiVo and a $100 gift certificate to Home Depot, all of which got their own song and dance in the form of in-show plugs and mentions on the website that even in some cases go so far as to tell users how to buy the products.

In fact, the Times article seems ready made to deflect gossip that there is tension on the set between Rosie and co-host Elizabeth Hasselbeck, who often voices conservative views. And it set the record straight about Ms. Walters conversation with her dog, Cha Cha, who she says spoke, telling her "I love you." That was comic relief, not Ms. Walters losing her marbles, as the New York Post played it. The overall message? "The View" is controlled controversy. And that's a safe place for advertisers.
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