Sexual Favors Epidemic At Fox News Following Probe
Fox News Channel CEO Roger Ailes has been tossed out for sexual harassment allegations against originally Gretchen Carlson, but, what has become a chorus of women spanning a decades long career of weirding out women at work. Originally it was in question, is Gretchen bitter? Was Roger Ailes innocent? Since the sons of Rupert Murdoch, founder of Newscorp, the Fox News parent looked into it, more and more women have been sharing their stories. Now, that story includes a work environment where women were pressured into sleeping with / performing oral sex on their work superiors.
Via Raw Story:
Many of the women with whom the Times spoke echoes similar stories. In order to advance at work, they were told they must perform sexual favors. Other women say they were subject to constant harassment, crude remarks and denigration of their gender by male staff at all levels.
Managers attempted to coerce junior employees into going on dates with men higher up in the company. One woman said that in 2009 she walked into an office she thought was empty only to find a male senior manager receiving oral sex from a young female staffer.
It’s not entirely surprising that at a place like Fox News interns are blowing their bosses. It’s somewhat more surprising that the on air personalities, which usually look more like football cheerleaders or weather girls than political junkies were also susceptible to such practices. One would think that a regular on air personality wouldn’t be as susceptible to sexual harassment as some intern who the boss can stow away under his desk. Apparently, the opposite:
Former Fox personality Rudi Bakhtiar told the Times about a run-in she had with her then-supervisor Fox News Washington Bureau Chief Brian Wilson. In 2007, Wilson dangled the possibility of a promotion in front of Bakhtiar and when she said she’d be excited to take the job, he reportedly told her, “I’d like to see the inside of your hotel room.” He said that he wanted them to have a “friends with benefits” relationship.
The whole scandal raises questions. Fox News is notorious for getting “sexy” shots of the women on air. They essentially have a workplace policy of always having at least one attractive women looking scantily clad… They foster that workplace environment, they celebrate it to get ratings, and now people are surprised to find out that there was a pervasive work culture of sexual harassment and sexual favors at Fox News?
The selective instances of personalities that have come out to say they were slightly harassed but turned down offers is likely a highly inaccurate representation. It’s unlikely that in a hostile work environment, women who ended up performing sexual favors, are likely to come forward. One can only assume it was and continues to be epidemic.
Ann Coulter Spills The Beans About Fox News Sexual Harassment
Political commentator and Conservative activist Ann Coulter was briefly interviewed by Huffington Post and asked about allegations that Roger Ailes CEO of Fox News sexually harassed women under his employ. It began with Gretchen Carlson, but has expanded since then to over a dozen women, now to also include Megyn Kelly.
Coulter was anything but surprised. Ailes, the Fox CEO who looks exactly like what you would envision as a fat gross boss who tries to screw all the good looking girls in the office has been finding it hard to cling onto his job since Rupert Murdoch’s sons who now own and operate the parent company of Fox News, Newscorp, really don’t like him.
“So that means he’s definitely out, by the way,” Coulter told The Huffington Post shortly after the new report dropped.
Coulter has never been employed by Fox News, but has been a familiar face on the network as a fiery commentator. The author said recently that she has heard about allegations against Ailes in the past, even as some of the network’s biggest stars were defending the embattled media executive.
“I noticed the people who’ve been saying ‘he never sexually harassed me’ also, by the way, work for Fox News, which was such a weird coincidence,” Coulter told HuffPost.
Some women working at Fox News recently told HuffPost that they had faced harassment similar to that described by Carlson.
Coulter also took a jab at Kelly who, so far, has publicly been silent on the recent allegations from Carlson and a half dozen other women. Last fall, Kelly described Ailes as a “mentor” who has been “nothing but good to me, and he’s been very loyal and he’s had my back.”
“I guess she waited for him to be out before she spoke up,” Coulter said, adding that it was “very brave of Megyn to wait until the last moment.”
Megyn Kelly is joining the ranks of Fox News women (and women over the last 30 years) who are becoming part of a chorus that all have similar stories of Roger Ailes, the Fox News CEO who is said to have wanted to trade work advancement for sexual favors.
Kelly to NYMag:
Kelly’s comments to investigators might explain why the Murdochs are moving so quickly to oust Ailes. As New York reported yesterday, Rupert and sons James and Lachlan, the three top executives at 21st Century Fox, have, according to multiple sources, decided that Ailes needs to be removed. Kelly, who has become something of a feminist icon thanks to her tangles with GOP nominee Donald Trump, is seen by many inside Fox as the future of the network. She’s currently in contract negotiations, and given that Bill O’Reilly has said he’s considering retirement, Fox can’t afford to lose her.
According to two sources, Monday afternoon lawyers for 21st Century Fox gave Ailes a deadline of August 1 to resign or face being fired for cause. Ailes’s legal team — which now includes Susan Estrich, former campaign manager for Michael Dukakis — has yet to respond to the offer. Ailes has also received advice on strategy from Donald Trump and Rudy Giuliani, sources say.
Ailes’s strategy so far has included attacking Kelly in the press. According to sources, Ailes spokesperson Irena Briganti has been criticizing Kelly to reporters, saying she is selfish to not stand up for the man who gave her career opportunities. Roughly a dozen Fox women have praised Ailes since Carlson filed her suit. According to a Fox source, the pro-Ailes campaign has been led by Fox anchor Kimberly Guilfoyle, who has filled in hosting Carlson’s former 2 p.m. time slot.
This comes on the heels of our previous story:
Fox News CEO Fired:
Fox News CEO Roger Ailes has been in an ongoing feud with Ruper Murdoch’s son, who runs Newscorp, the parent company of Fox. This relationship has become increasingly strained after allegations of Roger Ailes sexually harassing originally one broadcast anchor, and subsequently others have made claims. Those allegations were looked into, and now the determination has been made for Ailes to step down from Fox.
Questions remain as to whether this will happen immediately or be postponed until after the Republican National Convention.
After reviewing the initial findings of the probe, James Murdoch is said to be arguing that Ailes should be presented with a choice this week to resign or face being fired. Lachlan is more aligned with their father, who thinks that no action should be taken until after the GOP convention this week. Another source confirms that all three are in agreement that Ailes needs to go.
Gretchen Carlson, a daytime TV host was the first women to accuse Ailes of sexual harassment — publicly, but not the last.
And it appears Carlson won’t be the last, either. In recent days, more than a dozen women have contacted Carlson’s New Jersey–based attorney, Nancy Erika Smith, and made detailed allegations of sexual harassment by Ailes over a 25-year period, dating back to the 1960s, when he was a producer on The Mike Douglas Show. “These are women who have never told these stories until now,” Smith told me. “Some are in a lot of pain.” Taken together, these stories portray Ailes as a boss who spoke openly of expecting women to perform sexual favors in exchange for job opportunities. “He said that’s how all these men in media and politics work — everyone’s got their friend,” recalled Kellie Boyle, who says Ailes propositioned her in 1989, shortly after he helped George H.W. Bush become president by serving as his chief media strategist.