Former Fox contributor: Shep Smith resigning shows the Murdochs made a “business decision” for Fox News to be pro-Trump

Video file

Citation From the October 13 edition of CNN's Reliable Sources

BRIAN STELTER (HOST): There was also a left-wing conspiracy theory out there about Shep Smith the other day, and I want to debunk it. There was a report in The New York Times that Rupert Murdoch had a meeting with Attorney General Bill Barr. And that’s true, they did meet, but it had nothing to do with Smith resigning a day or two later. In fact, Smith had been thinking about doing this for several weeks. So I want to put that to rest. I do think it speaks volumes, though, that people wonder is someone pulling the strings? I mean, Julie, people do I think legitimately wonder about the Murdochs and their role in shaping Fox News and bringing it further to the right.

JULIE ROGINSKY (FORMER FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR): There's no question. I don't know how much further it could go to the right. I think there are business interests the Murdochs have that the president of the government of the United States, can benefit -- they can benefit from that. So as a result, obviously being on the side of the president, helping the president helps their business interests. I think that's a business decision that they've made. Having said that, I think there's an absence sense of leadership at Fox News. When I was there, Carl, when you were there, I think whatever you thought of the leadership, there was a very strong person at the helm who was able to rein a lot of this in. And I think today in the absence of what, what you have are people like Tucker Carlson and Sean Hannity essentially running their own fiefdoms and not really allowing others to have any kind of airtime. So I have spoken to a lot of people who are not Democrats or liberals by any stretch of the imagination unless you think that liberalism -- unless you think that truth has a liberal bias. These are people who are fact-checking the president in realtime. They're seeing the airtime cut off. They're not seeing as much access to the air as they used to have. And that’s a business decision I think the Murdochs are making. And I think it's unfortunate because the Fox News audience is not served well by having uncritical views of what the president is saying. There's no dispute about the fact that the president doesn't always say the truth -- and unless somebody says that on Fox’s air, there’s no way the audience would ever know that. And that’s really unfortunate.