Did President Trump's support lead to Bill O'Reilly's FOX News exit?

On Wednesday FOX News pulled the plug on Bill O'Reilly's popular prime-time show just two weeks after President Trump defended the longtime TV anchor amid resurfaced sexual harassment allegations. Could the president's defense played a role in ultimately getting O'Reilly canned?

According to MSNBC anchor Stephanie Ruhle it just might have. During a BUILD panel Wednesday discussing Trump's first 100 days in office, Ruhle suggested that the president's public support of O'Reilly may have "put more gasoline on this fire."

"The fact that we saw FOX take action after the president of the United States backed him -- I think that's extraordinary," Ruhle added.

Reactions to Bill O'Reilly's FOX News exit:

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Stars react to Bill O'Reilly's FOX News exit
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Stars react to Bill O'Reilly's FOX News exit
Say what you will, but Bill O'Reilly always had your back. And if you were a woman, he might try for your front, too. #RipPapaBear #LSSC
Bye, Bill O'Reilly. Don't let the door grab your pussy on the way out.
I'm certainly a narcissistic actor who loves attention but I take no joy in Bill O'Reilly. He's a disgusting pig & Fox News is still garbage
Bill O'Reilly. Bill Cosby. Billy Bush. I'M THE ONLY GOOD BILLY ON TV!!!!!
Gretchen Carlson. Megyn Kelly. Greta. Roger Ailes. Bill O'Reilly....amazing amount of exits -forced and voluntary- in 1 year at Fox News.
All the threats from O'Reilly's lawyers were bluffs. @DrWendyWalsh & @LisaBloom didn't back down. O'Reilly is gone. Protest voices heard.
New book by FOX News: Killing Bill O'Reilly.
It's confirmed: O'Reilly is fired. There is no force greater than the collective power of our voice. #DropOReilly https://t.co/uz5t4bxx2M
Well Bill, I guess we wont be doing it live. 👋🏼 @oreillyfactor https://t.co/NZkCHjFCQv
I say this in all sincerity, without joy, and with malice towards one: fuck Bill O'Reilly.
3 FAMOUS OLD MEN…ROGER AILELS, BILL O’REILLY,& DONALD TRUMP HAVE SEXUALLY HARASSED WOMEN 4 YRS,TWO GOT FIRED,& ONE WAS ELECTED PRESIDENT‼️
Fox firing Bill O'Reilly is huge and hopefully sends an effective signal to all guys, however powerful, who harass & maul women
Wait, @oreillyfactor is NOT returning to @FoxNews after his vacation?! Color me SHOCKED! 😒 #HowsMyHairBill? #DidItDistractYouFromThisTweet?
ICYMI @FoxNews has been settling w/ women for YEARS they only cut @oreillyfactor loose because they were losing $$$ #ProfitsOverPeople #MAGA
I guess when you elect the head crank you don't need the junior cranks anymore. https://t.co/Y9a3Sdycb1
Bill O'Reilly Alex Jones Rudy Giuliani Tomi Lahren Chris Christie People who are having a waaaaaay different 2017 than they expected.
New book by FOX News: Killing Bill O'Reilly.
I want to thank @oreillyfactor and @jasoninthehouse for their interest in @crookedmedia, but sadly we're not hiring new hosts at this time.
Bill O'Reilly out at @FoxNews next stops: court and prison!
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Trump, who has also been accused of sexual abuse, defended O'Reilly in the New York Times after the paper reported that FOX and O'Reilly paid $13 million to five women who accused him of sexual harassment.

"I think he shouldn't have settled; personally I think he shouldn't have settled," Trump told the Times. "Because you should have taken it all the way. I don't think Bill did anything wrong."

Fellow MSNBC anchor Ari Melber backed Ruhle saying, "We're going through a period of time where there is a public reckoning and reinterpretation of what is allowable, what is appropriate" -- citing that both former President Bill Clinton and President Trump have pasts that are similar to O'Reilly.

"President Trump's brand is that 1980s tough guy, run and gun, style," said Ruhle. "He was well meaning in saying 'I'm gonna support my friend.'"

"But the implications of that -- we're living in such a different time."

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