- The Washington Times - Monday, December 18, 2017

Tamara Holder, a former Fox News contributor who alleged last year that she had been sexually harassed by a male executive, said Sunday that the network has “ruined people’s lives.”

“Fox News ruined people’s lives, he ruined my life,” Ms. Holder told CNN on Sunday.

Ms. Holder was responding to recent comments by Fox News chairman Rupert Murdoch, who dismissed claims that sexual harassment allegations were negatively affecting the conservative-leaning network as “nonsense” and blamed criticism on partisan politics.

“There was a problem with our chief executive, sort of, over the years, outside incidents,” Mr. Murdoch said in an interview last week. “Soon as we investigated it, it was out of the place in hours. Well, three or four days. And there’s been nothing else since then.”

Ms. Holder, who reached a $2.5 million settlement with Fox after accusing Francisco Cortes, the former vice president of Fox News Latino, of trying to force her into performing oral sex on him in his office in 2015, said Sunday that she was breaking her confidentiality agreement in order to respond to Mr. Murdoch’s remarks.

“I would not have been able to be sitting here to say what I’m about to say if it wasn’t for Mr. Murdoch and what he said, because my settlement in exchange for money, I had to agree to be quiet, except if I was disparaged or maligned,” Ms. Holder said. “And because Mr. Murdoch said what he said, that 60 seconds has allowed me to speak out.

“I don’t have a job in TV anymore because the place that he has secured down like Fort Knox allowed abusive predators to prey on women who just wanted to work. That is not nonsense. This is people’s lives,” she said.

The late Fox News chief Roger Ailes resigned in July of last year after several women, including former Fox host Gretchen Carlson, accused him of sexual harassment. Prominent conservative hosts Bill O’Reilly and Eric Bolling were also ousted from the network in the following months over sexual harassment allegations.

21st Century Fox issued a statement defending Mr. Murdoch’s comments, saying his actions have made it “abundantly clear” that he takes allegations of sexual misconduct seriously.

“Rupert never characterized the sexual harassment matters at FOX News as ‘nonsense.’ Rather, he responded negatively to the suggestion that sexual harassment issues were an obstacle to the Company’s bid for the rest of Sky,” the statement read, in part. “Under Rupert’s leadership and with his total support, the Company exited Roger Ailes, compensated numerous women who were mistreated; trained virtually all of its employees; exited its biggest star; and hired a new head of HR.”

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