Fox News Executive Chairman Rupert Murdoch told employees Wednesday the network will "continue to be a powerhouse in cable news," despite the dismissal of top-rated television host Bill O'Reilly.
"I would like to address questions about Bill O'Reilly's future at Fox News. After a thorough and careful review of allegations against him, the Company and Bill O'Reilly have agreed that Mr. O'Reilly will not return to the Fox News Channel," Murdoch said after 21st Century Fox, Fox News' parent company, released a statement Wednesday saying O'Reilly would no longer be working at the station "after a thorough and careful review" of sexual harassment allegations levied against him.
The decision to cut ties with O'Reilly was made in the last two days, the AP reported, as the controversy mounted following a report in The New York Times in early April that five women had received payments in exchange for agreeing not to pursue litigation or speak about the accusations.
It "follows an extensive review done in collaboration with outside counsel," said Murdoch.
He added: "By ratings standards, Bill O'Reilly is one of the most accomplished TV personalities in the history of cable news. In fact, his success by any measure is indisputable. Fox News has demonstrated again and again the strength of its talent bench. We have full confidence that the network will continue to be a powerhouse in cable news. Please see attached for our new programming line-up."
"Most importantly, we want to underscore our consistent commitment to fostering a work environment built on the values of trust and respect," the memo continues.
"I understand how difficult this has been for many of you. Thank you for your hard work, patience, and for the great job you all do delivering news and opinion to millions of Americans whose trust you earn every day. I look forward to even more success in the coming years."
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