SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) — Political commenter Glenn Beck said he felt “completely duped” by his friend Tim Ballard after requesting his news team investigate the sexual abuse allegations.
When the allegations became public, Beck said on the podcast that he was talking with his friend Tim Ballard “all the time.” During a phone conversation at 3 a.m., he recalled telling Ballard, “If this is true then you have something to worry about. But you say this isn’t true, so trust in God.”
Ballard has continuously denied allegations calling them “baseless” and “false.”
Beck said it was not long until Ballard’s story started falling apart and he no longer knew what was true anymore.
Beck said he turned to his reporters at Blaze Media and asked them to investigate the issue. He said he didn’t want to investigate himself as he was not an investigative reporter and was too close to the situation due to his friendship with Ballard. He said he specifically instructed them to get at the truth regardless of what it was.
He said his reporters worked for hundreds of hours, speaking with five women who had made the allegations and Operation Underground Railroad. They also attempted to get Ballard to speak on the record, but the request was not met.
“It has consumed much of the work at Blaze Media for the last two weeks, and it has consumed me waiting, waiting, waiting,” Beck said.
After two weeks of dedicated work, he said the reporters sent him the article prior to publishing. Beck said it was one of the fairest articles he had ever read and that “the charges were pretty ugly.” He later called the contents “not good” and “disturbing.”
“I have an opinion now because I’ve read the story, but I can’t read it to you now,” Beck said.
Just prior to its publishing and Beck discussing it on his show, Beck said the attorneys called saying they never gave their permission although Beck claims the women themselves did. He ultimately decided not to publish it because they didn’t want to “re-victimize people.”
Later in the podcast, he urged the women to give permission through their attorneys saying “I know you’re afraid, but the truth sets you free. Let the chips fall where they may. This is an important thing.”
Beck included a disclaimer saying he could still be wrong since he was not there when the alleged abuse occurred. However, he said he is now on one side because he saw the text messages, read quotes, and listened to the interviews with the women.
While he used the words “duped,””betrayed,” and “torn” to describe his reaction to the report, he said he still sees Ballard as a friend.
“I still consider him a friend, but a friend I think is gravely misguided and needs to change his ways,” Beck said.
Beck ended by saying he could not tell others what to do or what is true without seeking after and telling the truth himself.
“Truth is truth, and if it means I have to say things I don’t want to about somebody I consider a friend, so be it,” he said.
The Blaze published an article the same day, likely after Beck’s podcast was recorded, with information on the Ballard allegations without the use of victim’s names. It also included commentary from Ballard and his wife Katherine.
Disclaimer: ABC4 is not responsible for the reporting done by The Blaze and cannot confirm or corroborate its claims.