Fox News Channel's parent company fired Bill O'Reilly on Wednesday following an investigation into harassment allegations, bringing a stunning end to cable news' most popular program and one that came to define the bravado of his network over 20 years. O'Reilly was photographed this week meeting Pope Francis.
The New York Times reports that news of O'Reilly's payout was met with "outrage" and "disgust" by some employees.
Murdoch, who is executive chairman of Twenty-First Century Fox, also wrote the company is committed to "fostering a work environment built on the values of trust and respect".
"The inference I draw from that is there may have been a studied effort to hide the fact that there were all these settlements being paid out by disguising them as salary", he said. He said it was "tremendously disheartening" that his relationship with the network ended because of "completely unfounded claims". "But that is the unfortunate reality many of us in the public eye must live with today", O'Reilly said in the statement, which was emailed by crisis communications expert Mark Fabiani. "I will always look back on my time at Fox with great pride in the unprecedented success we achieved and with my deepest gratitude to all my dedicated viewers".
Tucker Carlson will replace O'Reilly in the 8 p.m. ET time slot. The channel will also move "The Five" into a new timeslot.
INSKEEP: So what made Fox News care?
INSKEEP: OK. So here's a question that I bet you've been posing to people you know inside Fox News and around the media world - does this suggest a culture change at Fox, or is it merely that they had no choice? "Half of the fun that they have with their audiences comes from watching the outrage that they manage to provoke".
The latest woman, according to Bloom, said she never had a direct conversation with the Fox commentator, but said he referred to her as "hot chocolate" at one point when they were together alone, made grunting noises and leered at her cleavage and legs.
Ailes left in July 2016 in the wake of an internal investigation into sexual harassment allegations filed by former anchor Gretchen Carlson. It makes it a lot harder to go to the cable providers, who pay you close to $2 per household to carry Fox News programming, to make the case, hey, you really have to pass us this high level if your top-rated star can't get people to advertise on it, if there's that much taint around your brand.