A source tells PEOPLE that recent tabloid reports that The View co-hosts are feuding behind closed doors, are simply not true.
“Meghan and Joy fundamentally disagree on everything — on the show. But that’s what they are paid to do,” says the insider. “They have different politics and different views and their job is to argue about this stuff on air. But the idea that there’s fighting behind the scenes because of it is not true.”
“Two women can disagree and not be in a catfight,” the source adds. “Backstage, they’re totally friendly with each other, and Joy told people she never said anything bad about Meghan.”
Democrat Behar, 75, and Republican McCain, 33 — daughter of Senator John McCain — regularly debate back and forth on air. Earlier this month, the two women clashed during a discussion about top Trump aide Rob Porter, who recently resigned amid domestic abuse allegations from his two ex-wives. After Behar criticized White House Chief of Staff John Kelly for claiming he was “shocked” about the claims despite reports he was allegedly aware of them, McCain fired back, arguing that mocking Kelly was disrespectful to the alleged abuse victims.
“It’s very serious, and as a Republican, I am offended,” she told Behar, who countered, “As a Democrat, I am offended by Republicans. … I am offended by a party that backs a racist.”
“Oh my God,” responded McCain, rolling her eyes before the two women launched into a heated exchange.
But according to the insider, tensions from the blow-up didn’t linger.
“The day of their big ‘fight’ on air, they were acting totally normal afterwards,” says the source. “They’re not exactly hanging out together drinking every night. They’re two women at different stages of their lives who live in different parts of town and have different views — but they have a totally professional relationship and get along fine.”
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Behar was one of the original panel members of the ABC daytime talk show, co-created by Barbara Walters in 1997. She left in 2013 but rejoined the cast as a permanent co-host in 2015.
Former Fox News contributor McCain made her debut as a permanent co-host last October.
“A new chapter in The View history starts now because we have a new co-host,” said Whoopi Goldberg while introducing McCain. “She’s a strong voice for young conservatives, a bestselling author and blogger who has been fearless, speaking out about issues that affect women and all Americans. She definitely has got some maverick in her, ’cause she’s got a maverick dad who was a hero on the battlefield and in D.C.”
“It’s such a privilege to be on this show,” said McCain. “It’s so iconic specifically to be sitting in this chair that Elisabeth [Hasselbeck] made so great. I watched Elisabeth in college as a young Republican, and to be the conservative on this show is something that I take very seriously, and I’m excited to bring a different perspective to this show.”