Roger Ailes, CEO of the conservative Fox News channel, gave an interview to Newsweek that's making big waves.
The one time media consultant for Richard Nixon, Ailes is now head of the station dubbed by its critics as the most biased name in news. But although he now laments the hyper=partisan tone in national politics he's capable of some zingers of his own, having in previous interviews referred to National Public Radio (NPR) executives as Nazis (he later apologized for the claim).
In his wide ranging chat with Newsweek's Howard Kurtz, Ailes claimed he didn't mind if people thought Glenn Beck had been fired from the news channel.
And in an admission certain to cause controversy Ailes also admitted he would like both Bill and Hillary Clinton to join Fox News as political pundits.
Ailes also let it be known that he had clashed on numerous occasions with Tea Party queen Sarah Palin and he told Beck to reign in his more controversial claims.
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Perhaps the most surprising claim the conservative CEO revealed is that has recently made a 'course correction' at Fox News, veering it away from hard-right conspiracy theories like birtherism and the general line it took in the earlier days of the Obama administration.
Some critics have failed to see any evidence of this ‘course correction’ however, citing for example Fox host Eric Bolling’s shocking observation in June that President Obama was inviting too many ‘Hoods in the Hizzy’ (meaning black men to the White House) a complaint that Bolling illustrated with a graphic of a black man with a flashing gold tooth.
But in January, Ailes revealed, he ordered his anchors and pundits to 'tone it down' in the wake of the Gabrielle Giffords shooting.
Glenn Beck's departure and taking a less obviously supportive stance on the network’s most famous pundit Sarah Palin, have been part of that strategy, Ailes revealed.
Ailes also revealed that jewel in Fox’s crown, pundit Bill O'Reilly, literally 'hates' rival anchor Sean Hannity because he's jealous of his radio success (in the process confirming rumors about years of animosity between the two).
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