Glenn Beck says he feels ‘duped’ by friend, Tim Ballard amidst allegations
Oct 6, 2023, 4:00 PM | Updated: Oct 9, 2023, 1:53 pm
SALT LAKE CITY — Glenn Beck, a conservative talk-show host and longtime supporter of Operation Underground Railroad, addressed claims of sexual misconduct against his “friend” Tim Ballard and called him “misguided.”
KSL TV confirmed more than five women have accused Ballard of sexual misconduct through an attorney, Suzette Rasmussen, who spoke in a press conference on Sept. 27. The allegations first surfaced when a report from Vice News detailed Ballard’s departure from OUR after an investigation into claims against him.
Beck spoke about his friend Ballard on his podcast, “The Glenn Beck Program.”
In the 14-minute clip segment, Beck said when he first heard of the allegations he didn’t know how to address them. Beck said he spoke with Ballard on the phone “all the time.” Ballard denied the allegations.
“His story started to fall apart by Sunday,” Beck said. “…..I had been friends with Tim Ballard for so long and I had felt completely duped. And I thought if I don’t know that about someone I’m close to, how can I possibly come on the air and tell people what is true? I have no idea obviously.”
Blaze Media, described as “an American conservative media company” on its website, began an investigation into the allegations which was published Friday afternoon. Beck said his team talked to Ballard, five different women, and OUR.
“And the charges are pretty ugly,” Beck said.
Beck explained Blaze Media was hoping to publish the article on Monday, but Tim Ballard wouldn’t speak on the record.
“We didn’t feel it was right to just have charges and not answers for that,” Beck said.
Beck said he was not a part of the investigation or article at all, although Beck said he was originally approached by someone representing the women who said they wanted to tell him their story. He declined, explaining he was too close to the case.
Beck said he has “opinions now because I read the story.”
“These women are not only terrified, because quite honestly, Tim Ballard is known as a good guy he is liked by a lot of people, he is a friend of mine! I still consider him a friend, but a friend I think who is gravely misguided and needs to change his ways,” Beck said.
Beck emphasized multiple times that he just wanted the truth.
“I still could be wrong. I wasn’t there. But I have seen the text messages. I have read the quotes and listened to the tape of the interviews and I will tell you, I believe one side,” Beck said. “But I could be wrong and it brings me no joy to say this. I found out about this with the attorneys after doing all of the show prep on it and everything else, I found out about this 35 minutes ago — that I couldn’t share the actual story with you.”
Beck then called the story, “disturbing,” and encouraged women to come forward with their experiences.
“I know you’re afraid but the truth sets you free let the chips fall where they may,” Beck said. “This is an important thing.”
Rasmussen, who is representing more than five victims, and some of the victims Blaze interviewed, released the following statement:
“The victims of Tim Ballard’s sexual predatory conduct and grooming stand by their statements and look forward to the litigation process where they can finally prove the truthfulness of what happened through Tim Ballard’s own texts and OUR’s enabling documents.
Blaze Media… has now published a report detailing some of the allegations against Ballard. In a statement to KSL NewsRadio… the womens’ attorney, Suzette Rasmussen, says Ballard’s continued denials aren’t surprising… and are welcome evidence of the magnitude of his ability to deceive himself, his following the victims and Latter-day Saint Church leadership…. using people’s desire to end child trafficking. Rasmussen’s statement continued:
These victims collectively say to Mr. Ballard – ‘See you in court.’
Ballard has previously said accusations of sexual misconduct are baseless. KSL TV reached out to SPEAR Fund, a separate nonprofit where Ballard has served as a senior advisor since leaving OUR, for comment and did not get an immediate response.
“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,” Beck said.