Roger Ailes out as Fox News CEO, will remain as consultant
It took a few days, and cost more money than originally reported, but Roger Ailes is finally gone as CEO of Fox News. News reports say the golden parachute is worth $60 million, a tidy sum, and quite a reward for someone accused of sexual harassment. On the other hand, attorneys for fired anchor Gretchen Carlson can now put a new price tag on any settlement talks with the 76 year old Ailes.
Gabriel Sherman, who has been writing about the Ailes story for New York magazine, reported earlier this afternoon that Ailes had been kicked out of his NYC office and moved another 21st Century Fox building in Manhattan. 21st Century Fox is the parent company of Fox News.
21CF source says as of today, Ailes has been moved out of Fox News HQ at 1211 Ave of the Americas to another 21CF building in Manhattan
— Gabriel Sherman (@gabrielsherman) July 21, 2016
The reports were “confirmed” – sort of – by the Drudge Report, though Matt Drudge’s previous reports on this story have proved inaccurate, or at least premature.
Brian Stelter of CNN said “I keep asking Fox hosts, reporters, producers, commentators if they’ve heard from Ailes, and I keep hearing the same answer: No.”
But finally, official word was released by 21st Century Fox (see below).
Also, the Drudge Report published the resignation letter from Ailes to Rupert Murdoch (hell of a leak). In it he says “With your support, I am proud that we have built Fox News and Fox Business Channels into powerful and lucrative news organizations that inform our audience and reward our shareholders. I take particular pride in the role that I have played in advancing the careers of the many women I have promoted to executive and on-air positions.”
Here is the official announcement:
Rupert Murdoch will assume the role of Chairman and acting CEO of Fox News Channel and Fox Business Network.
Rupert Murdoch, Executive Chairman, 21st Century Fox, said:
“Roger Ailes has made a remarkable contribution to our company and our country. Roger shared my vision of a great and independent television organization and executed it brilliantly over 20 great years.
Fox News has given voice to those who were ignored by the traditional networks and has been one of the great commercial success stories of modern media.
It is always difficult to create a channel or a publication from the ground up and against seemingly entrenched monopolies. To lead a flourishing news channel, and to build Fox Business, Roger has defied the odds.
His grasp of policy and his ability to make profoundly important issues accessible to a broader audience stand in stark contrast to the self-serving elitism that characterizes far too much of the media.
I am personally committed to ensuring that Fox News remains a distinctive, powerful voice. Our nation needs a robust Fox News to resonate from every corner of the country.
To ensure continuity of all that is best about Fox News and what it stands for, I will take over as Chairman and acting CEO, with the support of our existing management team under Bill Shine, Jay Wallace and Mark Kranz.”
Lachlan Murdoch and James Murdoch, 21st Century Fox’s Executive Chairman, and CEO, respectively, said:
“We join our father in recognizing Roger’s remarkable contributions to our company. Our talented Fox News and Fox Business colleagues, up and down the organization and on both sides of the camera, have built something that continues to redefine the cable news experience for millions of viewers. We are enormously proud of their accomplishments. For them, as well as for our colleagues across our entire organization, we continue our commitment to maintaining a work environment based on trust and respect. We take seriously our responsibility to uphold these traditional, long-standing values of our company.”