Advertisers Flee Laura Ingraham's Fox News Show in Greater Numbers
Ingraham on Friday night announced that she's taking a pre-planned vacation, two days after she sent a tweet critical of Parkland student David Hogg.
Enmeshed in a controversy that has cost her show advertisers over the last two days, Fox News host Laura Ingraham announced on her show Friday night that she’s taking a pre-planned trip for Easter and will be off the air next week. Ingraham has been under fire for a tweet she sent on Wednesday morning that appeared to mock Parkland, Florida, high school student David Hogg for not getting into colleges to which he applied.
Guest hosts for next week include Jason Chaffetz and Pete Hegseth.
As of Friday evening, Ingraham's show had lost at least 16 percent of her current national advertiser inventory, according to a tally from the left-leaning media watchdog organization Media Matters for America, which has publicized her advertisers. Ingraham lost eight corporate advertisers on Thursday and 10 more on Friday, including major brands like Hulu, Honda and Expedia.
Hogg called for an adviser boycott of Ingraham's show on Wednesday night, after she tweeted an article that morning mocking Hogg.
Nutrish, a pet food company, was the first to publicly pledge to pull advertising from her show. Several brands that advertise on Ingraham's show, including IBM and Kayak.com, have yet to comment publicly.
Fox News host apologized for her critical tweet following the backlash, but Hogg then doubled down and asked her to apologize for the network's coverage of the Parkland high school students more broadly.
Ingraham, a conservative radio star who is known to speak with President Donald Trump, has enjoyed high ratings since joining Fox News in late October. (The Hollywood Reporter interviewed her then.)
She did not discuss the backlash on her Thursday night show, and is not expected to do so on Friday night. Fox News has not commented on the advertiser backlash.
Sean Hannity, Ingraham's lead-in on Fox News, lost advertisers in November as part of a campaign to punish him for his comments about disgraced Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore. He called off a campaign to punish the coffee-maker company Keurig for pledging to pull advertising from his Fox News show, and pledged to replace the Keurig machines smashed by his supporters.
Angelo Carusone, president of Media Matters for America, predicted more advertiser defections but guessed that Ingraham's Fox News show would ultimately survive. "However, much like we have seen with Sean Hannity, the quality of her advertisers will dwindle and her advertiser rates will decline," he said. (A Fox News spokesperson disputed that contention and said that advertisers returned to Hannity's show.)
A former Fox News employee told THR that the advertiser backlash Ingraham's show is facing pales in comparison to past efforts to take down former hosts like Glenn Beck and Bill O'Reilly. Beck's show lost advertisers after he called former President Barack Obama a "racist" in July 2009, though he didn't ultimately leave the network until 2011.
Brent Bozell, the president of the right-leaning media watchdog Media Research Center, credited Ingraham for apologizing and said her statement was only minimally offensive. "Her apology was sufficient and demanding anything more is grandstanding by the radical left," he wrote Friday. "If this is the left’s new standard, advertisers should ditch the majority of liberal talk shows!"
March 30, 9:20 p.m. Updated to include guest hosts for next week's show and information on Ingraham's pre-planned vacation.