05:28 GMT28 February 2020
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    Roger Ailes, the founding head of Fox News may be nearing the end of his 20-year stint leading the conservative media outlet. Rupert Murdoch, CEO of parent company 21st Century Fox, along with James and Lachlan Murdoch, his sons and company co-chairmen, have reportedly decided to remove the executive amid recent sexual harassment allegations.

    There are conflicting reports concerning the professional fate of the 75-year-old Ailes. One report claims that James Murdoch, after reviewing the initial probe by New York law firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, wants to present Ailes with the choice of resigning this week or being fired, while another report claims that Lachlan wants to wait until after the GOP convention to make a decision. Still another report claims that all three men unanimously seek to remove Ailes. 

    The lawsuit against Ailes centers around Gretchen Carlson, former host of Fox’s "The Real Story With Gretchen Carlson," who claims that she was fired from Fox after she "rebuffed Mr. Ailes sexual advances" and for speaking out against the mistreatment of women at the network. According to a release published by Carlson’s attorneys, Ailes called her a "man hater" and once told her "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."

    In another incident, Carlson, the 1989 Miss America, claims that the CEO, in an industry speech, declared laughingly that "he had slept with three former Miss Americas, but not with her," referring to Carlson.  

    Carlson’s suit has sparked a larger investigation into Ailes management habits, with the plaintiff’s legal team conducting interviews with former female employees of Fox News at their office, for fear that the studio might be bugged. There are also questions about whether Ailes is pressuring current Fox News employees to defend him against the allegations.

    Neil Cavuto, Senior VP and Managing Editor at Fox Business, wrote an op-ed piece for Business Insider, denying having ever witnessed inappropriate behavior from Ailes toward women. Cavuto claimed, "I've never seen it. I've never witnessed it. Not even hints of it." Cavuto called the allegations "a lot of clutter and a lot of nonsense," and that "None of it remotely matches the man I've come to know over these recent decades." 

    One Fox anchor said that Ailes and his supporters at Fox News are "scared to death," and "the mood is bleak."

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    Tags:
    News, Sexual Harassment, Lawsuit, Fox News, Gretchen Carlson, Roger Ailes, United States
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