Joy Behar Isn't Leaving 'The View' : 'Rumors of My Retirement Have Been Greatly Exaggerated'

"As of now, as of today, I'm going nowhere," Joy Behar said  

Photo: Lou Rocco/Walt Disney Television/Getty

Joy Behar is setting the record straight about her reported exit from The View.

On Thursday’s episode of the ABC daytime talk series, the comedian and longtime co-host — who has been on the show since its 1997 premiere — cleared up headlines that she was retiring, stressing to audiences that she has no plans to walk away from her gig.

“They’re always talking about me leaving the show, but I’m not leaving the show,” she said. “Rumors of my retirement have been greatly exaggerated.”

“Here’s the thing, what am I going to do? This pandemic has changed the game!” she joked, referencing the ongoing coronavirus outbreak. “At one point you think, ‘Gee, I could retire and take a cruise around the world.’ I won’t even watch reruns of Love Boat at this point. So where am I going to go? What am I going to do? I need to be on television.”

The outspoken Democrat also teased that her conservative rivals need her to keep espousing liberal ideas.

“Let’s not forget that I provide employment for right-wing media,” she said. “I’m a job creator over at Breitbart. Everything I say appears over at Breitbart! I don’t see how I could leave!”

Variety reported Behar’s supposed departure from The View on Wednesday, citing an interview for the paperback edition of Ramin Setoodeh’s tell-all, Ladies Who Punch: The Explosive Inside Story of The View.

“I have a three-year contract,” Behar said, according to Variety. “But that doesn’t mean I can’t leave if I want to, because they can’t really do anything to me at this point. I don’t see myself staying for more [time]. That’s it! I could be wrong. If I’m as fabulous in [2022] as I am now, I’ll think about. But the chances of that happening… You know, time marches on. I’m not a kid.”

Though Variety interpreted that to mean she was retiring in 2022, Behar — who is the longest-running co-host in the show’s history — clarified what she meant on Thursday’s episode of The View.

“What I did say to the reporter who reported this was, ‘If I’m this fabulous in 2022 as I am now, I’ll probably be here,’ ” Behar said. “You just don’t know, no one knows what they’re going to do in the next two years.”

“Look at what just happened to all of us in the world. You can’t predict anything!” she added. “As of now, as of today, the answer is no, I’m going nowhere.”

THE VIEW - 9/3/19 Season 23 of ABC's "The View" begins Tuesday, September 3, 2019. "The View" airs Monday-Friday (11am-12 noon, ET) on ABC. VW19 (Walt Disney Television/Heidi Gutman) SUNNY HOSTIN, WHOOPI GOLDBERG, JOY BEHAR, MEGHAN MCCAIN, SUNNY HOSTIN
Former View co-host Abby Huntsman, alongside current View panelists Whoopi Goldberg, Joy Behar, Meghan McCain and Sunny Hostin. Heidi Gutman/Walt Disney Television

Behar’s co-hosts Whoopi Goldberg, Sunny Hostin and Meghan McCain all showed her support, stressing they didn’t want to see Behar step away from the show.

“It would be very hard without you,” Goldberg said. “It would be like breaking up the band.”

“The band’s been broken up before,” Behar joked, nodding to 2013, when she was briefly fired as executives attempted to skew the show in the less-political direction (Ratings famously took a hit, and after just two years, Behar was brought back).

McCain, Behar’s frequent sparring partner, was particularly insistent that her political opposite remain on the show.

“I called Joy immediately yesterday and was like, ‘This isn’t an option. You’re not leaving. I’m not leaving. None of us are leaving,’ ” McCain recalled. “‘There’s a pandemic, and an election, and the world is insane. And also, I’m pregnant and I need advice from you about being pregnant. From someone who probably does pregnancy similar to how I’m going to do it. So it’s not an option, Joy. You’re not leaving. None of us are allowing you to go.’ ”

We’re not letting her leave,” McCain wrote on Twitter. “This is like the mafia.”

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