Former NBC Sports reporter Michele Tafoya said she got “absolutely ambushed” in a recent podcast interview.
Though Tafoya did not mention which podcast, she was a guest on “The Dan Le Batard Show” last week and things appeared contentious between her and the hosts while discussing critical race theory and Florida’s The Parental Rights in Education Act, also known as the “ Don’t Say Gay” bill.
“The second I got on—bam. I was ambushed with ‘You’re anti-CRT. You’re a racist. You can’t read the Florida law without it being homophobic,’” Tafoya said on an appearance on the Fox News show, “Gutfeld!” this week.
“I was absolutely ambushed.”
Tafoya said she agreed to do the Miami-based podcast because it was “someone I knew from my past.”
Just days prior to her Fox appearance, “The Dan Le Batard Show” aired an episode in which Tafoya was a guest in the second hour. The conversation seemed tense and argumentative at times over differing political views.
Le Batard, who left ESPN for Meadowlark Media, introduced Tafoya to the show, saying “I have had nothing but cordial experiences with her, but I have read recently that you have been on the dark side, secretly on the dark side.”
At one point, Le Batard said “I think I’m in the middle and you think you are in the middle and I’m looked at as far left and you’re looked at as far right? When all I look at is — man, our leadership everywhere stinks. The Republicans seem ruthless to me and the Democrats seem weak and none of them represent me.”
Tafoya responded, “Well that’s — then I wouldn’t say that you are on the far left. And I wouldn’t — I don’t know who sees me on the far right. I mean, I’m a pro-choice libertarian. I don’t know how that makes me far right.
“All I am is a fiscal conservative who really wants America to come together and for people to be able to realize their potential and not be told that they’re oppressed or that they are an oppressor. That kind of boils it down for me. I’d like to see some law and order so people don’t get hurt.”
Tafoya worked at NBC Sports, from 2011-22, primarily as a sideline reporter for “Sunday Night Football.”
NBC Sports announced in January that Super Bowl 56 in February would be Tafoya’s final broadcast of her career — which includes four Emmy Awards for Outstanding Sports Personality-Sports Reporter.
At the time, Tafoya foreshadowed pursuing other opportunities outside sports.
“Some may consider me crazy to walk away from one of the most coveted roles in sports television, and I do not doubt that I will miss many aspects of the job,” she said. “But for some time, I have been considering other areas I would like to explore both personally and professionally. I couldn’t ignore that little voice anymore after what we have all endured over the last few years.”
Tafoya’s first job after leaving NBC was co-chairing Republican Kendall Qualls’ campaign for governor in Minnesota. She currently hosts the “Sideline Sanity” podcast, in which she interviews guests, including politicians and sports figures, to discuss world topics.