Pundit and gadfly Bill O'Reilly no longer has any doubt about how big his pull is. According to his own glowing estimation, the Fox News opinion maker is now only slightly less powerful than the president of the United States.
'I have more power than anybody other than the president,' O'Reilly told Newsweek this week, in a quote that seemed concocted in a laboratory to generate outrage.
Oh and he has a new co-written book to hawk, entitled Killing Lincoln.
O'Reilly claims that having cable news largest elderly viewership means he possesses nearly unprecedented power.
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'I can get things changed, quickly,' he told Newsweek. 'I don’t have to go through the legislative process; I don’t have to do any of that. I can just bring it to the people, and say, look, this has gotta be dealt with.'
Although he admits he's been able to pull most major political players into his vortex, some glaring omissions have tantalized him over the years. Former Vice President Dick Cheney is one example, but O'Reilly says Cheney prefers to play things safe.
'There is a fear factor,' O’Reilly explained. 'I’ve watched four or five of his interviews—I mean, it’s all cupcakes, you know? I ask ’em questions, all right? Obama. I mean, when Obama sits with me, he doesn’t know what the hell’s coming, and it’s exciting. It’s exciting.'
O'Reilly speaks highly of President Obama, who has been on his show twice, and came away with boosts in the polls each time: 'A guy like Obama, he’s got reason to be afraid, and he’s not,' he says. 'He’s composed; he likes to joust. There are personalities that do, and there are personalities that don’t.'