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In a scathing report out Saturday, Huffington Post contributor Yashar Ali uncovered disturbing allegations that ABC News’ top talent executive, Barbara Fedida had been repeatedly accused of using racially charged and abusive language against the staff. And in response to the allegations, ABC had suspended Fedida as they investigated and issued an on-air comment during Sunday’s Good Morning America.
According to Ali’s report, Fedida used racially charged comments during a 2018 contract dispute with black GMA co-anchor Robin Roberts:
Roberts, a Black woman who has co-anchored “Good Morning America” since 2005, wanted more money as part of a contract renewal, and Fedida felt that Roberts had gotten enough. Fedida then asked what more Roberts could want and said it wasn’t as if the network was asking Roberts to “pick cotton,” according to one source who was in the room and witnessed the exchange. Two other sources who were not present but were told about the incident soon afterward confirmed the account to HuffPost.
Easing into ABC’s discussion of the charges, co-anchor Dan Harris noted that, “you may have heard that there is some controversy right now involving ABC News.” Adding: “According to a story citing an unnamed sources, in the Huffington Post, Barbara Fedida (…) is alleged to have said derogatory things about members of the staff including an alleged racially charged comment about our colleague Robin Roberts.”