During a recent appearance at New York University’s Stern School of Business, controversial pundit Glenn Beck finally revealed why he left Fox News: He did it to save his soul. Trouble for Beck is, that’s not exactly true, according to his former employer.
In a Forbes profile of the pundit and his insanely successful The Blaze media network, Jeff Bercovici quotes Beck as saying “I remember feeling, ‘If you do not leave now, you won’t leave with your soul intact,'” of his decision to leave Fox News.
Beck also recounted a conversation he’d had with Fox News chairman Roger Ailes. Though conventional wisdom has long suggested that Beck was being pushed out, he revealed that Ailes actually asked him to stay. Per Forbes:
“At the end, when we were leaving, it was a long process,” he said. “Roger said to me, ‘You’re not going to leave.’ And I said, ‘I am.’ And he said, ‘Nobody does,’ meaning leave television….And I said, ‘I’m fortunate because I haven’t been in it that long.’ I knew what this big, huge Fox empire brought to the table, and I had to leave before I became too enamored of that.”
But a Fox News spokesperson quickly rebutted Beck’s version of the story in an email with Politico‘s Mike Allen.
“Glenn Beck wasn’t trying to save his soul, he was trying to save his ass. Advertisers fled his show and even Glenn knows what that means in our industry. Yet, we still tried to give him a soft landing. Guess no good deed goes unpunished.”
On Friday, Glenn Beck received a Disruptive Innovation Award from the Tribeca Film Festival for his Blaze media network.
What do you think of Glenn Beck? Do you buy his side of the story, or that of Fox News?
[Image via: Gage Skidmore, Wikimedia Commons]