Barbara Walters: Joy Behar, Elisabeth Hasselbeck Were Booted from The View to ‘Shake Things Up’

Hasselbeck and BeharDid Joy Behar and Elisabeth Hasselbeck leave The View of their own accord, or were they pushed out?

A new interview with the retirement-bound Barbara Walters all but confirms that it was the latter, despite initial claims that the pair chose to exit ABC’s venerable gabfest.

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“These are not Barbara and Bill’s decisions,” Walters told Variety, referring to herself and View EP Bill Geddie. “The network is also involved. I think the feeling was if one went, both had to leave. We needed to shake things up.”

Jenny McCarthy filled one of the vacant chairs, and guest co-hosts have been brought in to occupy the other. Looking ahead to next season, Walters — who will remain an exec producer on the show — strongly hinted that another right-leaning personality will be added to the mix to keep those Hot Topics segments heated. “We need a conservative voice,” she acknowledged. “We do try to present a different side.”

Walters’ final day co-hosting The View will be Friday, May 16. That same night, ABC will air a two-hour special at 9/8c highlighting her life and career.