Roger Ailes Exit Prompts Mixed Reactions From Industry

Roger Ailes - Publicity - H 2016
Wesley Mann/Courtesy of FOX News

Roger Ailes - Publicity - H 2016

The news chief has exited as chairman and CEO of Fox News after 20 years of leading the network.

Roger Ailes has stepped down as chairman and CEO of Fox News after 20 years of building the network under Rupert Murdoch. The news comes after former anchor Gretchen Carlson filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against him, followed by multiple women who gave similar claims, including Megyn Kelly.

Murdoch, 85, will assume the position of chairman and acting CEO of Fox News Channel and Fox Business Network.

Murdoch on Thursday addressed the exit agreement in a statement where he expressed Ailes' "remarkable contribution to our company and our country. Roger shared my vision of a great and independent television organization and executed it brilliantly over 20 great years. Fox News has given voice to those who were ignored by the traditional networks and has been one of the great commercial success stories of modern media."

Carlson's lawyers declared victory over Ailes stating, "Within just two weeks of her filing a lawsuit against Roger Ailes, Gretchen Carlson's extraordinary courage has caused a seismic shift in the media world. We hope that all businesses now understand that women will no longer tolerate sexual harassment and reputable companies will no longer shield those who abuse women. We thank all the brave women who spoke out about this issue. We will have more to say in coming days as events unfold."

The shakeup has prompted a number of Fox News hosts and analysts to weigh in, including Bret Baier, who told Politico, "It feels bad."

Chris Wallace told Business Insider in a statement, "In almost 50 years in the news business, Roger Ailes is the best boss I have ever had. I admire him professionally. And I love him personally. I am heartbroken he is gone. Roger and Rupert came up with the concept of Fox News 20 years ago. I can’t think of a better person to keep Fox News on track than Rupert."

Read reactions from Geraldo Rivera, Samantha Bee and other industry names below.