Alexis Bloom & Alisyn Camerota on Roger Ailes

Roger Ailes reshaped American media and politics by founding Fox News. Christiane Amanpour talks to Alexis Bloom, the director of the new documentary “Divide and Conquer: The Story of Roger Ailes,” as well as Alisyn Camerota, an anchor who worked closely with Ailes at Fox News.

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I mean I think that Roger played loose with the rules a lot and I guess that he didn't think that they applied to him.

He was so powerful, he was certainly so powerful at Fox that there was no court of higher authority that you could ever go to so when he set up quid pro quos or when he said lascivious things that were grossly inappropriate, there was no one to ever turn to and so there was a feeling that, you know, Roger it was Roger's sandbox and you had to play by his rules and it could be, you know, quite unpleasant, frankly, having to be in his office and having to play by his rules.

You know I didn't find the sexual harassment that I experienced to be career ruining as that woman did but I certainly hit a dead end at Fox and I think I hit a dead end because I wouldn't spout the conservative talking points that he wanted me to spout and it was quite clear that, he told me, I mean it wasn't, it wasn't even veiled.

He told me that you have to do this in order to get ahead and I wasn't willing to do that so it was always Roger's way or the highway.

So let's talk a little bit now about the political impact because it is not just a media company, it's one that is campaigned for, lobbied for, directed and, as he himself boasted, has got several Republicans elected president and he felt he still had work to do, Alexis, to elect more more like minded president so we know about Nixon, we know about the first George W. Bush, the the the Willie Horton ad, all of those things, but fast forward a little bit now to President Trump. What did you learn in the documentary about his active help and Fox's active help in the Trump campaign?

Well I mean he was very active.

I don't think Donald Trump was necessarily Roger Ailes' first choice but he'd certainly given him sort of ample opportunity to sort of prove himself and way before the election he puts Donald Trump on every single Monday on his own you know on a show every Monday and then you know given him interviews on all the major shows in Fox.

You know not talking specifically about political strategy, about the economy, about immigration, you know, giving him kind of political legitimacy.

Nobody else did that.

You know Donald Trump might have been famous for The Apprentice, but there's a pivot you know from fame into kind of a political sphere and Roger certainly, I mean wouldn't you say, he certainly gave him that.

Oh absolutely.

I mean, Christiane, that's what happened.

I watched it happen.

It was on Fox and Friends and that's when Donald Trump became a pontificator, that's when he would talk about national and international issues.

About This Episode EXPAND

Christiane Amanpour speaks with Alexis Bloom & Alisyn Camerota about Roger Ailes and interviews legendary musician Paul Simon about his career. Hari Sreenivasan speaks with author Casey Gerald about his new memoir “There Will Be No Miracles Here.”