At Tina Brown’s Women in the World Summit in New York Wednesday night, Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly got real—which is nothing new for fans of her show, The Kelly File, or even those who never really knew her name before that fateful debate when she challenged presidential hopeful Donald Trump's temperament.
For better or worse, Kelly’s profile is higher than ever thanks to that August incident on the campaign trail last year. So how does it feel to be on the other side of the news?
“It is bizarre; it is surreal,” she told session moderator Katie Couric. (Though only after quipping, “You know a little something about that Katie,” referring to Couric’s own unforgettable interview with then-vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin.) “It’s very strange to see the headlines come in and see your own name. I’m looking forward to that ending.”
At Couric's behest, Kelly talked at length about how she will not let that now-infamous moment with Trump deter her from doing her job, which she says is to "press" the people she interviews. And where does that conviction come from, Couric asked?
“I come from a long line of strong women,” she said. “You are going to laugh, because it’s the opposite of what you’re anticipating. My parents expected me to be a cheerleader forever. I didn’t take myself seriously as an academic student until I decided I wanted to go to law school. My parents never said ‘you’re great and you’re smart and you can do it.’ They did two things: they showed me I could do it and they insulted me!”
As proof, she recounted a story of how her parents would joke that Kelly would never move out because, “I was a very unattractive child,” she recalled. “My parents used to say, ‘She’s going to be with us a long time ...'”
Even so, Kelly wouldn’t change a thing. “I never grew up thinking I was the bee’s knees,” she said, herself a mom of three. “What it did was give me the greatest gift, which was self-awareness. Show, don’t tell your kids. Let them see that you actually believe in them.”