Comedian Rosie O’Donnell has had enough of “The View”… again.
For the second time in seven years, the outspoken ABC daytime talk show host decided to leave the popular all-women panel to focus on her family. Her decision coincided with her reported recent breakup with her wife of nearly three years, Michelle Rounds.
O’Donnell’s publicist, Cindi Berger, said in a statement that the couple previously split in November. O’Donnell and Rounds, her second wife, adopted a baby daughter together in 2013. The “A League of Their Own” actress has four older children from her previous marriage to Kelli Carpenter.
The comedian, 52, ended her first one-year stint on the show in 2007 following failed negotiations with ABC to renew her contract. But then she rejoined the program last September. “Rosie is an immensely talented star who comes in each and every morning brimming with ideas, excitement and passion for the show. When she told us that she wanted to exit ‘The View,’ we respected and understood her desire to put her well-being and her family first,” a spokesperson for the network said in a statement.
The spokesperson also noted O’Donnell has an upcoming guest appearance on the ABC show, “The Fosters.”
On “The View,” the female co-hosts discuss a variety of political and social issues. Oscar-winning actress Whoopi Goldberg moderates the show, now in its 18th season.
O’Donnell infamously clashed with her co-hosts in the past, including current Fox News personality Elisabeth Hasselbeck. In May 2007, they engaged in a 10-minute, on-air argument about U.S. foreign policy that led to both women calling each other “cowardly.” O’Donnell’s views, especially about the George W. Bush administration and the war in Iraq, often triggered debates with the unabashedly conservative Hasselbeck. In one memorable clash, the two women debated the meaning of the word “terrorist.”
More recently, O’Donnell clashed with Goldberg in December, going head-to-head while debating the topic of racism in the United States. “Listen, you are a white lady telling me what is racist to you, which is fine,” Goldberg told O’Donnell during a terse exchange. Later, O’Donnell countered with: “I have a black kid I raise, Whoopi. I have a black kid in my house.”
Recently, several of the program’s panelists have been on and off the show. There were rumors actress Rosie Perez had left indefinitely to appear in a new Broadway play, but she returned on Feb. 3 after a month-long absence. Actress and former Playboy centerfold Jenny McCarthy and comic actress Sherri Shepherd formally confirmed their departures in July 2014. And Barbara Walters, the legendary broadcast journalist and creator of the show in 1997, retired last May.
The series also previously featured journalist Lisa Ling and comedian Joy Behar. O’Donnell leaves behind Goldberg, Perez, and Nicolle Wallace, who served as communications chief for former President George W. Bush’s White House and reelection campaign. Perez and Wallace also joined the show in September, along with O’Donnell.
Last summer, former Alaska Gov. and 2008 Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin considered auditioning for a spot on the panel, saying, “maybe a show like that needs a punch of reality and a voice of reason from America’s heartland to knock some humble sense into their scripts.”
Will Palin seize the opportunity to replace O’Donnell?