Gretchen Carlson Lawsuit: Fox News, Roger Ailes Respond

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Both Fox News as an organization and Roger Ailes himself have responded to a lawsuit filed by Gretchen Carlson.

Gretchen Carlson Picture

As previously reported, Carlson alleges in eight court documents that Ailes sexually harassed her during her tenure as a Fox News employee.

She says that she was fired on June 23 because she refused Ailes’ sexual advances, which then prompted the CEO and Chairman to punish her for months prior to letting her go.

Carlson was a co-host of Fox & Friends from 2005 through 2013.

She was then taken off that program and given one of her own, though she says she was also forced to take a pay cut.

According to Carlson, she asked for a meeting with Ailes in September of 2015 to discuss his retaliatory and discriminatory practices.

He supposedly responded as follows:

“I think you and I should have had a sexual relationship a long time ago, and then you’d be good and better and I’d be good and better.”

Ailes’ alleged “retaliation” continued through June, Carlson claims, when her contract was not renewed and she was dropped from her show, The Real Story.

Gretchen Carlson Photo

The lawsuit also accuses Fox & Friends panelist Steve Doocy of “severe and pervasive sexual harassment,” saying he never treated her as a serious journalist.

Carlson says she was fired after complaining to management about Doocy.

In response to Carlson's accusations, 21st Century Fox has released a statement that reads:

"We take these matters seriously. While we have full confidence in Mr. Ailes and Mr. Doocy, who have served the company brilliantly for over two decades, we have commenced an internal review of the matter."

Ailes, meanwhile, was far harsher in his assessment of the situation.

"Gretchen Carlson’s allegations are false," he said in a statement of his own, adding:

"This is a retaliatory suit for [Fox News’] decision not to renew her contract, which was due to the fact that her disappointingly low ratings were dragging down the afternoon lineup.

"When Fox News did not commence any negotiations to renew her contract, Ms. Carlson became aware that her career with the network was likely over and conveniently began to pursue a lawsuit."

Concluded Ailes:

This defamatory lawsuit is not only offensive, it is wholly without merit and will be defended vigorously.

We're guessing we have not heard the end of this.

Roger Ailes
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