Today there are reports of a settlement being reached just months after former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson first filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against former conservative media titan Roger Ailes — who was until recently the chairman and CEO of Fox News.
Vanity Fair is reporting that while Ailes was the only person named in the suit, it will be 21st Century Fox — the parent company of Fox News — paying the $20 million settlement as they are “essentially his insurer for any settlement, according to two people familiar with the arrangement.”
During the early days of the settlement, Fox News took the unusual step of hiring an independent law firm to investigate the claim. The firm interviewed Fox News employees and after a short period of time issued a preliminary report that led to Ailes being fired from his position.
Many believe that it was the bombshell testimony of Megyn Kelly to the private investigators that tipped the scale towards Aile’s removal. Kelly is one of Fox News’ biggest names, who gained a new level of notoriety for being the first journalist to openly challenge Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump during the first GOP primary debate last August.
Reports say that not only did Kelly testify against Ailes, she also encouraged other women in the company to speak up as well.
Shortly after Kelly came forward, former Fox News host Andrea Tantaros came out with her own explosive allegations against Fox News and said that “Fox News masquerades as a defender of traditional family values, but behind the scenes, it operates like a sex-fueled, Playboy Mansion-like cult, steeped in intimidation, indecency, and misogyny.”
On top of paying Carlson $20 million to make her lawsuit go away, Vanity Fair reports that an “unprecedented apology” from Ailes will be a part of the settlement. After the initial civil complaint was filed in July, Ailes sent out a strong statement denying any wrongdoing.
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“Gretchen Carlson’s allegations are false. This is a retaliatory suit for the network’s decision not to renew her contract,” said Ailes..
Now it appears that Ailes will have to publically acknowledge his slimy behavior and will no longer have the luxury of using his influence and power to paint Carlson as just another vengeful female. This could be a huge precedent for sexual harassment cases.
Featured image via YouTube.