NEW YORK — Megyn Kelly has advice for women in the spotlight after surviving attacks by Donald Trump: Drop the filter.
The Fox News host spoke to Cosmopolitan editor-in-chief Joanna Coles at Advertising Week here today. Kelly has been the subject of much media coverage since Trump criticized her line of questioning during a Republican debate. Earlier this month the rising cable news star signed with talent agency Creative Artists Agency.
Coles started the session by asking women in the audience if any of them had their period. The joke was a reference to a disparaging comment by Trump, who said of Kelly after the debate: "You could see there was blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her … whatever."
Recalling her experience with Trump, Kelly said she sticks to the motto, "Head down, shoulders back, forge forward." As reviled as Trump is in certain circles, Kelly said the GOP presidential candidate appeals to some people because he is "a fighter" and has an "ability to make people laugh."
In that regard, the female presidential candidates can take a note from his book in countering critical media coverage, Kelly said.
"Nothing works if it’s not authentic," she said. Though female candidates are often judged by a different standard, Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton has a communications style that is too "massaged," Kelly added.
"It’s appealing to see someone who’s not that filtered," Kelly said. "Your ears perk up when you hear a candidate share something about themselves. … It’s a moment of connection."
Clinton, who has faced controversy for failing to disclose personal emails during her stint as US Secretary of State, needs to speak more openly and honestly with the media, Kelly said.
"Honesty matters," Kelly said. "Take me on. Take everyone on. Tell the truth, and even if it’s not that great, that’s okay. The American people will forgive you if you’re honest."