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Fox News fires Bill O'Reilly after sexual harassment accusations

21 April 2017

The announcement followed growing reports that the corporation headed by Rupert Murdoch meant to sack the veteran host and just hours after the right-wing television personality was photographed shaking hands with Pope Francis in Rome.

O'Reilly, denied a chance to say goodbye to his Fox viewers, did so via a statement.

O'Reilly lost his job on the same day he was photographed in Rome shaking the hand of Pope Francis.

The decision to force out O'Reilly, 67, came after dozens of advertisers abandoned his highly rated program amid a barrage of sexual harassment allegations. Fox News Channel announced Wednesday O'Reilly has immediately departed the network.

Fox News dropped the commentator after a "thorough and careful review of allegations against him", according to an internal memo obtained by Business Insider.

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Concern over whether Fox broke the law by failing to disclose its settlements to investors is more likely to impact approval than whether the company is mired in sexual misconduct allegations, said Claire Enders of Enders Analysis, who has studied the Murdoch empire for years.

That will be Tucker Carlson, whose show is moving to the 8 p.m. slot on Fox.

Starting Monday, Carlson's show will be followed at 9 p.m. EDT by "The Five", relocating from its afternoon slot.

The news was discussed by Howard Kurtz, Fox's media analyst, during a segment on the network's 6 p.m. program "Special Report".

While O'Reilly insisted he was independent - he described his program as the "No-Spin Zone" - he was more critical of progressive-leaning ideas and often decried the loss of what he called traditional American values that he believed in while growing up in a modest household in the Long Island suburbs during the 1950s and '60s. According to ad-tracking firm Kantar Media, it brought in $147.13 million in advertising revenue in 2016. Even though at least one of the harassment cases against him dated back more than a decade and was widely reported then, the accumulation of cases outlined in the Times damaged him much more extensively.

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One current Fox News contributor who had stayed silent for months came forward Wednesday with complaints that O'Reilly had made inappropriate comments to her.

"I'm not going away", said Lisa Bloom, attorney for the latest accuser and another woman who alleges her career stalled because she spurned O'Reilly's advances.

But after the New York Times report, advertisers including BMW of North America, Allstate Corp, French pharmaceuticals maker Sanofi SA and T. Rowe Price, pulled their advertising from O'Reilly's primetime The O'Reilly Factor show.

O'Reilly said in a statement at the time that he had settled only to spare his children from the controversy. The channel's majority owner is Fox News Channel parent company 21st Century Fox. We have full confidence that the network will continue to be a powerhouse in cable news. "Cable news is someone standing on a mountain top shouting, and Bill O'Reilly was on the highest peak so he echoed across the landscape".

"You may not know this, but Bill O'Reilly was the biggest figure in the history of cable news", Noah explained, before launching a clip package of various ways in which O'Reilly argued white people are persecuted. In total it has sold 141,394 copies in three weeks. No more silencing women!

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Fox News fires Bill O'Reilly after sexual harassment accusations