A new accuser reportedly stepped forward Wednesday with a decades-old claim of being sexually harassed by the chief executive officer of Fox News as he was working on a New York City mayoral campaign in the late 80s. Roger Ailes has now been accused of sexual harassment by at least seven women, with the latest instance coming as he was negotiating his exit from the cable news channel over the scandalous claims.
The unidentified woman was interviewed Wednesday by New York magazine's Gabriel Sherman, who broke the story earlier this month and has resulted in the apparent downfall of the man who built Fox News into the powerful media conglomerate that it is today.
Other women either currently or formerly employed by Fox News have come forward with similar accounts to former Fox News host Gretchen Carlson, who filed a sexual harassment lawsuit in New Jersey against Ailes.
One of Ailes' alleged victims, Marsha Callahan, detailed to NPR the basis of her complaint that she said stemmed from an episode almost 50 years ago. "At the time I was young and pretty naive and didn't know what to make of it," said Callahan, who was at the time also working as a model. "You go insane when that happens. You think that I must have done something to make him think he could do this."
Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly is also among the women alleging Ailes' sexual harassment. Her complaint was apparently the one that pushed the top brass at Fox News' parent company News Corp. to move for Ailes' exit from the company.
Ailes' who has been mostly mum since the accusations arose, spoke out Wednesday and flatly denied through his lawyers Kelly's allegations, People reported.
The Fox News chief "never sexually harassed Megyn Kelly," Susan Estrich said in part before adding: "They had enormous amounts of encounters over the years in which he consistently helped her become a stronger and more popular, more successful television anchor. You look at what she said about him in her book and every place else. She's repeatedly said how terrific he's been as a mentor."
Ailes has been in charges of Fox News since 1996. He got his start in TV in the early 60s before moving on to political consulting in the late 80s, which is when he allegedly sexually harassed the woman behind the latest claim while he was working on Rudy Giuliani's campaign for mayor of New York City.