Former Fox News reporter and weekend anchor Alisyn Camerota, now at CNN, appeared on her network’s Reliable Sources program Sunday to reveal for the first time that former Fox CEO Roger Ailes sexually harassed her over the decade she worked there.
Ailes, who Donald Trump described last year as a “longtime friend,” resigned in 2016 in scandal after a sexual harassment lawsuit against him by former anchor Gretchen Carlson prompted several women to come forward with similar horror stories about the Fox News founder, and the predatory male-dominated environment at the right-wing TV news network.
“I don’t relish the idea of talking about this,” said Camerota, who left Fox for CNN three years ago. “I don’t like the idea of even criticizing my past workplace where I was for many years. But something feels different this week. It felt like there was a tipping point.”
That tipping point was the firing of Fox News star anchor Bill O’Reilly this week after at least six women accused him of sexual harassment, and it became clear that Fox News and its parent company 21st Century Fox had spent millions of dollars over a decade to protect him.
Asked directly if Ailes had sexually harassed her, Camerota’s response was, “Yes. Roger Ailes did sexually harass me.”
Camerota said Ailes “could be charming. He could be charismatic. He could be uproariously funny. He could also be a bit of a bully and mean. And he also was often kind of grossly inappropriate with the things he would say.”
Her most lingering memory of that abuse was when she first started at Fox.
“I remember being in Roger’s office and I was saying I wanted more opportunity, and he said, ‘Well, I would have to work with you. I would have to work with you really closely,” Camerota told CNN.
“‘And it may require us getting to know each other better,’” Ailes continued, “‘And that might have to happen away from here. And it might have to happen at a hotel.’”
Ailes’ attorney responded to Camerota’s comments by stating, “These are unsubstantiated and false allegations,” according to CNN.