Roger Ailes Accuses Gretchen Carlson of ‘Defamatory’ Lawsuit

In a statement late Wednesday afternoon, Fox News Chairman and CEO Roger Ailes pushed back against former host Gretchen Carlson after she filed a lawsuit alleging “severe and pervasive” sexual harassment leading up to her firing from the TV channel. “Gretchen Carlson’s allegations are false. This is a retaliatory suit for the network’s decision not to renew her contract, which was due to the fact that her disappointingly low ratings were dragging down the afternoon lineup,” Ailes wrote. “When Fox News did not commence any negotiations to renew her contract, Ms. Carlson became aware that her career with the network was likely over and conveniently began to pursue a lawsuit. Ironically, Fox News provided her with more on-air opportunities over her 11-year tenure than any other employer in the industry, for which she thanked me in her recent book. This defamatory lawsuit is not only offensive, it is wholly without merit and will be defended vigorously.”