Megyn Kelly (Paul Morigi/Getty Images)
Monday, 04 Jan 2016 04:36 PM
In an expansive interview with Vanity Fair, the Fox News host, who sparked a bitter feud with Trump after using her first question at the first Republican presidential debate on Aug. 6 to accuse him of making a host of sexist and demeaning comments about women, says Trump tried to win her over to no effect.
“[H]e would send me press clippings about me that he would just sign ‘Donald Trump,'” Kelly told the magazine. “And he called from time to time to compliment a segment. I didn’t know why he was doing that. And then when he announced that he was running for president, it became more clear.”
“But I can’t be wooed. I was never going to love him, and I was never going to hate him.”
As she read the research on the individual candidates compiled by Fox News before the debate, Vanity Fair reports, “a couple of themes began to emerge” for her in Trump’s file.
“The one that hadn’t been explored was his sexism,” Vanity Fair’s Evgenia Peretz writes. “Knowing that if Hillary [Clinton] were to be the [Democrat] nominee she’d hit him with that issue, Kelly had her first question.”
“I wrote it. I researched each line item myself,” Kelly told Peretz. “It was interesting to me after the debate when people started fact-checking my question. My own reaction was ‘Bring it on.’ You think I’d go out there and ask a question like that at the first G.O.P. debate without making sure I was bulletproof on every single word?”
“I would have crawled over a pile of hot coals to make it to that debate,” Kelly says. “No one was going to be sitting in for me, reading my questions.”
An angry Trump told CNN in the days after the debate that “You could see there was blood coming out of [Kelly’s] eyes. Blood coming out of her wherever.”
Last month, Fox News confirmed that Kelly would again be a moderator at the Jan. 28 Republican presidential debate in Des Moines, Iowa.
Kelly says a personal ambition is to do more layered interviews with news subjects in the future, similar to Charlie Rose or Oprah Winfrey, welcoming the fact that such programming would be “less immersed in angry political exchanges.”
“Charlie Rose does it, and he does it very well. But that doesn’t mean nobody else can do it,” Kelly told Vanity Fair.
“I think that there’s a spiritual component to my personality that is completely unutilized in my current job.”