Megyn Kelly is revealing the details of her alleged sexual harassment by her former Fox News boss, Roger Ailes, in her upcoming book, Settle For More, according to Radar Online, which says it obtained a copy of the book.
Ailes offered to advance Kelly’s career “in exchange for sexual favors” and he implied he would not renew her contract when she refused his advances, Kelly writes, according to Radar.
Ailes was ousted as the CEO of Fox News — a position he had held since the network’s launch — after former Fox News broadcaster Gretchen Carlson sued him for sexual harassment and other women came forward with similar allegations. Fox later settled with Carlson for $20 million.
Kelly writes that the inappropriate behavior began when she was told by her managing editor that she had “captured the attention of Mr. Ailes” while she was working as a legal correspondent for the network’s Washington bureau, Radar reports.
Ailes summoned her to several meetings in his New York office, and “began pushing the limits,” Kelly wrote, according to Radar. “There was a pattern to his behavior. I would be called into Roger’s office, he would shut the door, and over the next hour or two, he would engage in a kind of cat-and-mouse game with me — veering between obviously inappropriate sexually charged comments (e.g. about the ‘very sexy bras’ I must have and how he’d like to see me in them) and legitimate professional advice.”
She wrote that she rejected every offer from Ailes to advance her career in exchange for sex, but in January of 2006, she wrote Ailes “crossed a new line — trying to grab me repeatedly and kiss me on the lips.” When she pushed him away, “he asked me an ominous question: ‘When is your contract up?’ And then, for the third time, he tried to kiss me.”
The harassment ended six months later when Kelly reported Ailes to a supervisor — who is left unnamed in Radar’s account and presumably in the book as well — and Kelly kept quiet until Carlson sued Ailes for harassment, she wrote, according to Radar.
“Crossing him was a major risk,” Radar says she wrote, “but what if — God forbid — he was still doing it to someone?”
Kelly then related her experience to Lachlan Murdoch, the co-chairman of Fox News’ parent company, 21st Century Fox, Radar reported.
When Ailes tried to get Fox News employees and on-air personalities to defend him from Carlson’s allegations, Kelly stayed quiet.
“I was approached several times, and several times I refused,” she wrote, according to Radar.
The book is slated to come out on Nov. 15. She is in active talks to renew her contract with Fox News and is seeking $20 million a year, according to The Wall Street Journal.
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