Roger Ailes, who built Fox News into a powerhouse, dies at 77

19 May, 2017, 11:50 | Author: Benny Bass
  • Gone¬†Fox News employees and friends of founder and former CEO Roger Ailes remembered the media titan after his passing on Wednesday

I am profoundly sad and heartbroken to report that my husband, Roger Ailes, passed away this morning.

While Ailes was forced out a year ago in a blaze of sexual harassment allegations, which he denied, Fox News today is the most watched cable news network in America, a powerhouse of the right and the bete noire of Democratic coastal elites.

Ailes was the head of Fox News for more than two decades and steered the company to ever-higher profits while courting a loyal right-wing audience and no shortage of controversy in the network's primetime lineup.

Roger Ailes, who transformed TV news by creating Fox News Channel, only to be ousted at the height of his reign for alleged sexual harassment, died Thursday, Fox News reported.

Ailes was arguably the most powerful man in American media when he suddenly lost his job last summer. "And so even as we mourn his death, we celebrate his life", the statement concluded.

Update 4:45 p.m.: The Palm Beach County, Florida, Medical Examiner's Office ruled the death of Roger Ailes an accident, according to a news release issued Thursday afternoon.

Earlier in the breaking news segment, co-hosts Savannah Guthrie and Matt Lauer rightfully pointed out the controversy surrounding Ailes' firing from Fox News over sexual harassment allegations.

Kudlow told WLS it is "unfortunate" that much of the coverage of Ailes death will center around the sexual harassment allegations, because he says Ailes was much more than that. "Roger Ailes was a close friend of mine and I'm going to miss him".

Andrea Tantaros, a former Fox News host, files a lawsuit alleging that she was sexually harassed by Ailes and O'Reilly.

Bill O'Reilly - Before helping Ailes launch Fox in 1994, O'Reilly was a middling correspondent and anchor for CBS News, ABC News and finally the syndicated tabloid television show "Inside Edition".

The formula shook the American news industry and changed American politics. I mean, I think you look at him, he's 77 years old. He changed both media and politics forever.

Ailes began his television career in Cleveland and Philadelphia in the 1960's and then became a political consultant for Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush.

In an excerpt from the 2013 biography "Roger Ailes Off Camera", Ailes said he knew his days were numbered. At least six other women, including former Fox News star Megyn Kelly, came forward to accuse Ailes, who denied wrongdoing.

Fox News executive chairman Rupert Murdoch said he was "shocked and grieved" by Mr Ailes' passing.

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