Roger Ailes: Even Worse Than You Thought

An upcoming biography alleges that Fox News’ Roger Ailes once offered a female employee a raise in exchange for sex and was once investigated by an employer for harassing a coworker with an anti-Semitic slur, according to a report in the New York Times.

The book, written by New York magazine contributing editor Gabriel Sherman, purports to be an expansive look at the mysterious and controversial visionary behind the Fox News empire. Alongside the shocking allegations of workplace harassment, Sherman’s book also alleges that Ailes looks down on Fox News superstar Bill O’Reilly — “a book salesman with a TV show” — and once told a group of Fox News executives that he wanted “to elect the next president.”

But it’s behavior from Ailes earlier days as an executive for NBC that has drawn the most attention. According to the Times report, Sherman’s book features former Ailes employees who describe the man as “volatile” and “domineering.” One former employee, a television producer named Randi Harrison, told Sherman that while negotiating her salary, Ailes said he’d give her $100 more per-week “if you agree to have sex with me whenever I want.”

Further, the book alleges that Ailes was once investigated by NBC for abusing a fellow NBC executive with an anti-Semitic slur. Sherman quotes Bob Wright, a former chairman and chief executive at NBC, as saying of the affair: “My conclusion was that he probably said it.” The person on the receiving end of the slur, however, says he and Ailes are now friends, and that the allegation is “false.”

Sherman’s book will be released on January 21.

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. AlterNet’s journalists work tirelessly to counter the traditional corporate media narrative. We’re here seven days a week, 365 days a year. And we’re proud to say that we’ve been bringing you the real, unfiltered news for 20 years—longer than any other progressive news site on the Internet.

It’s through the generosity of our supporters that we’re able to share with you all the underreported news you need to know. Independent journalism is increasingly imperiled; ads alone can’t pay our bills. AlterNet counts on readers like you to support our coverage. Did you enjoy content from David Cay Johnston, Common Dreams, Raw Story and Robert Reich? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower? Analysis by The Conversation? Then join the hundreds of readers who have supported AlterNet this year.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

alternet logo

Tough Times

Demand honest news. Help support AlterNet and our mission to keep you informed during this crisis.