LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Pop singer Barry Manilow, a major Democratic fundraiser, said on Monday he has scrapped plans to appear on the television talk show “The View,” because he did not want to be interviewed by its conservative co-host.
Manilow was scheduled to appear on the ABC morning show Tuesday, the same day his new album, “The Greatest Songs of the Seventies” hits stores. But those plans fell through because of his issues with Elisabeth Hasselbeck, an abortion opponent and supporter of the Iraq war.
"I had made a request that I be interviewed by (co-hosts) Joy (Behar), Barbara (Walters) or Whoopi (Goldberg), but not Elisabeth Hasselbeck. Unfortunately, the show was not willing to accommodate this simple request so I bowed out," he said in a statement on his Web site (www.manilow.com).
“It’s really too bad because I’ve always been a big supporter of the show, but I cannot compromise my beliefs.”
In an earlier statement to the news Web site TMZ.com, which broke the news, Manilow said Hasselbeck was “dangerous” and “offensive.”
But a source close to “The View” said “we canceled him,” because producers refused to comply with Manilow’s “completely disrespectful” demands.
The source told Reuters that Manilow had appeared on the show twice in the past year when Hasselbeck was present, and had been booked for Tuesday’s appearance since July. The source could not think of a similar incident with another guest happening in the past.
Manilow has been a generous contributor to Democratic Party candidates, according to data compiled by the Federal Election Commission.
This year, he contributed the maximum-allowable $2,300 each to the presidential campaigns of Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Joseph Biden, and John Edwards, as well as to Ron Paul, a maverick Texas Republican.
He has also been a big supporter over the years of U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer, a California lawmaker on the left wing of the Democratic Party.
Manilow, whose biography says he has sold more than 75 million records worldwide, reached No. 2 on the U.S. pop album charts last year with his previous release “The Greatest Songs of the Sixties.”
He was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2002, although many of his big hits — such as “Mandy,” “I Write the Songs” and “Looks Like We Made It” — were written by other people.
ABC is a unit of Walt Disney Co. Manilow Records for Arista Records, a unit of Sony BMG Music Entertainment.