Fox News has never been a network to take allegations lying down. This week, the network was sued by former employee Gretchen Carlson, who alleges that during her time at Fox News she dealt with a sexual harassment from several employees, namely stating that Fox News Chairman and CEO Roger Ailes was the problem. This morning, Fox News fired back with a statement from Roger Ailes rebutting all claims and otherwise explaining exactly why the network decided to fire Gretchen Carlson. He claims Carlson's allegations are not only false, but offensive, as well. Here's the full statement.
So, in Roger Ailes' eyes, Gretchen Carlson was fired for poor performance and only then did she decide to sue the network for behind-the-scenes shenanigans she alleges occurred. On the other side of the suit, Carlson has claimed that the CEO actually made sexual advances toward her. She also says that comments were made of a sexualized nature that made her uncomfortable. When she asserted herself to Roger Ailes and stated she did not want to date him, that's when he allegedly took action and fired her.
Of course, Roger Ailes' and Fox News are claiming that the firing occurred as the due course after Gretchen Carlson's contributions became increasingly unsatisfactory. Reports indicate that The Real Story with Gretchen Carlson was underperforming in the 3 p.m. slot in the 25-54 demographic. Carlson has alleged she was moved from the coveted Fox & Friends position to an afternoon hour with less pay after she told Roger Ailes she was not interested in a relationship and that underperformance had nothing to do with it. It's sort of like comparing apples to oranges; afternoons can be harder for TV shows, although they are competing against an entirely different TV demographic than morning shows like Fox & Friends. So, at the root of this is the question of why Carlson was moved to the new hour in the first place.
Gretchen Carlson also made her own statement:
These sort of he-said, she-said issues can get really ugly. Words and ideas get twisted and sometimes ugly stuff comes out in the courts. We'll have to wait and see if the lawsuit gets that far, but considering that both Gretchen Carlson and Roger Ailes came out swinging, this doesn't look to be the sort of lawsuit that will be going away soon. We'll keep you updated, regardless of what ends up happening.