Gayle King of "CBS This Morning" appeared on the "Late Show with Stephen Colbert" on Tuesday, a previously scheduled appearance that ended up landing on the same dayover allegations of sexual misconduct.
"Oh Stephen, I came this close to canceling," King told Colbert.
King initially was slated to talk about Oprah Winfrey's "Favorite Things" — she serves as editor-at-large for "O Magazine" — but as Colbert noted "this turned out to be a different day for you."
CBS fired Rose Tuesday one day after eight women spoke to The Washington Post about sexual misconduct allegations against him.
"I was very proud of CBS News and what you and Norah [O'Donnell] and everyone at CBS This Morning did, covering the allegations against Charlie Rose as news -- objectively and fully," Colbert said. "It couldn't have been easy."
"To be honest with you, it still isn't easy -- it's still very painful, it's still very hurtful. Charlie and I have worked together, been friends," King said. "But when you think about the anguish of those women, despite the friendship, you still have to report the news. And so when I think of the job that we do at CBS -- that's why I wanted to cancel, because I didn't want to be here sitting here and talk about this -- but when you think of the job we do at CBS, how hard the people work, I want you to know we are a top-notch broadcast operation."
King said she never had to report "in this manner" about a friend or colleague before. "It was very painful for me this morning -- still is," King said.
When Colbert asked if King was angry, she said she feels "raw" and "numb." "It's a stunning thing that has happened in 24 hours."
"I hope if there's a message to be learned from this whole thing, it's that we have zero tolerance for this type of behavior," King said.
King said she didn't think sexual misconduct allegations would go back into the shadows. But, King warned, nothing will change until men in position in power start to listen -- and until more women ascend into positions of power.
"We now have to realize it's all bad -- none of it is really acceptable," King said.
In Colbert's opening monologue, he called the acts described in allegations against Rose a "harrowing and terrible abuse of power." Colbert made a few additional jokes about Rose, prompting King to say that listening to these things about her friend and former colleague made her "wince".