CNN is reporting that former Fox News CEO Roger Ailes has died:
Roger Ailes, who transformed cable news and then American politics by building Fox News into a ratings powerhouse, died Thursday. He was 77.
The death was announced by his family and reported on Fox News Channel. There was no immediate information on a cause of death.
“I am profoundly sad and heartbroken to report that my husband, Roger Ailes, passed away this morning,” his wife, Elizabeth, said in a statement. “Roger was a loving husband to me, to his son Zachary, and a loyal friend to many. He was also a patriot, profoundly grateful to live in a country that gave him so much opportunity to work hard, to rise — and to give back.”
Sean Hannity, a prime time host and longtime face of the network, said on Twitter: “Today America lost one of its great patriotic warriors.”
Ailes started Fox News almost from scratch in 1996. With its slogan “Fair & Balanced,” the network grew into not just the cable news ratings leader but a profound influence on the right wing of American politics.
Ailes was removed as head of Fox News in 2016, as CNN reports:
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Ailes was arguably the most powerful man in American media when he suddenly lost his job last summer. Gretchen Carlson, a former Fox anchor, sued him for sexual harassment, and other women came forward to support her claims. Carlson settled with 21st Century Fox, the network’s parent company, for $20 million.
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