Last year, Roger Ailes resigned his position as Fox News CEO amid accusations from multiple women that he had sexually harassed them in the workplace. Now, CNN co-anchor and former Fox News anchor Alisyn Camerota is adding her voice to that chorus of women seeking justice and recognition for the humiliation and victimization Ailes allegedly forced upon them, while he held his position at the network. Camerota is opening up about her own experiences, telling CNN’s Brian Stelter about her encounters with Roger Ailes.
Alisyn Camerota Exposes Sexual Harassment Incidents at Fox News
Fortune reports that Ms. Camerota is sharing her own sexual harassment experiences, while a co-anchor at Fox News and, as she talks about her own experience, Alisyn reveals that she was not alone. While this doesn’t come as a surprise at this point, following Roger Ailes 2016 resignation, the current CNN anchor is validating the earlier allegations made by other female employees of the network.
“Roger Ailes did sexually harass me,” Camerota told CNN’s Brian Stelter. “He was often kind of grossly inappropriate with the things he would say. And I think many of us experienced that.”
Alisyn was employed for over 10 years at Fox News, but she recalls that, in the beginning, her ambitious nature landed her in a compromising position with Ailes. She went to the network CEO seeking more responsibility and possible advancement opportunities. Roger told her that would be possible, but they would have to work “really closely” together and meet at Ailes’ hotel room, following that insinuation up by making sure Camerota understood the implication.
At the time, Alisyn says she was concerned that turning down the advances made by Ailes would jeopardize her career and negatively impact her position at Fox News.
Responding through his attorney, Susan Estrich, Roger Ailes has denied Camerota’s claims as false and without merit.
“Mr. Ailes never engaged in the inappropriate conversations she now says occurred, and he vigorously denies this fictional account of her interaction with him and of Fox News editorial policy,” said Estrich in a statement.
Ms. Camerota says she also felt targeted by Ailes, because she didn’t share his world view. The former Fox News executive urged Alisyn to promote a more conservative view on air, suggesting she could take her career further, if she aligned her views more closely to the conservative stance taken by Ailes and the network.
Why is Alisyn Camerota Coming Forward Now?
While Alisyn’s experiences were devastating, her recent confession leaves some wondering why she waited so long to speak out. As CNN reports, Ms. Camerota previously felt stifled by the “don’t ask, don’t tell” atmosphere among her co-workers and especially among those victimized by the former Fox News CEO. Now, Camerota says that the allegations made about Bill O’Reilly and his subsequent termination suggests that things are starting to change.
“It feels as though, if I take the Murdochs at their word, they really want to know what was wrong there and what the culture was like,” Camerota said.
Alisyn also shares that, at the time, she was just starting out on her career, and being younger and inexperienced, she felt humiliated and embarrassed by Ailes’ advances.
In the end, Camerota never did go to Ailes’ hotel room and she believes that was why he attacked her liberal views and her unwillingness to comply with the network’s conservative slant. Alisyn adds that she started to feel bullied by Roger and eventually started to refuse requests to go to Ailes’ office.
The current CNN anchor adds that Fox News shouldn’t be judged by a few bad apples. While Ailes and Bill O’Reilly may have created a suppressive atmosphere, Camerota says there are plenty of good, hard working people at the network.
“I think that there was a lot of suffering in silence and people who felt humiliated and people who felt scared and people who felt intimidated,” says Alisyn Camerota.
[Featured Image by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images]