Laura Ingraham is the latest Fox News host to have conveniently timed a vacation right after a controversy erupted. In Ingraham’s case, it’s the backlash and loss of advertisers from her smear of Parkland shooting survivor David Hogg and her half-hearted apology.
As I’ve previously reported, Ingraham apologized for “any upset or hurt” caused by her mocking the college rejections of Parkland student Hogg. He’s one of the survivors of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School last month and now a leader in the student-led gun control movement. But Ingraham’s apology, which she suggested was only made because it’s Holy Week, came only after Hogg began a campaign for her advertisers to boycott Ingraham’s show and more than 24 hours after her original attack.
“On reflection, in the spirit of Holy Week, I apologize for any upset or hurt my tweet caused him or any of the brave victims of Parkland,” Ingraham tweeted. She also invited him on her show “for a productive discussion.”
Many advertisers appeared to keep their distance from the program on Friday. The only blue-chip advertiser to appear over the course of the hour-long broadcast was IBM. Otherwise, many of the sponsors were direct-response advertisers like MyPillow.com, or lesser-known entities such as the American Petroleum Institute, Interstate Batteries and KT Tape. Fox News also filled commercial breaks with promos for hosts like Bret Baier, or the mid-morning team of Bill Hemmer and Sandra Smith.
Fox News is working with advertisers, says a person familiar with the network’s ad sales strategy, accommodating sponsors who wish to move commercials elsewhere, but also maintaining a long-term view about the program and its connection with Madison Avenue. In February, “The Ingraham Angle” drew an average of more than 2.6 million viewers, according to Nielsen. Only Fox News’ “Hannity,” and “Tucker Carlson Tonight” and MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show” attracted more viewers that month. With that size of an audience and following – Ingraham is also a longtime radio host – advertisers could find her program difficult to ignore in the future.
Ingraham is at least the fourth Fox News host to take a week-long vacation in a year, right after a controversy erupted. Bill O’Reilly took one last year, after reports of sexual harassment drove advertisers from his show. He never returned to the Fox News airwaves. More recently Jesse Watters took one after he made suggestive remarks about Ivanka Trump and Shepard Smith recently took off after some candid remarks about Fox’s opinion programming.
Watch Ingraham announce her vacation below, at the end of the March 30, 2018 The Ingraham Angle, via The Wrap.
(Ingraham image via screen grab)
Her problem here isn’t that she was serially harassing her staff or generating multi-million dollar lawsuits Fox News would need to cover up. Her problem is that she is simply a nasty person and for once, she was called out on her behavior.
I expect she’ll be back in a week and back up to her viciousness the moment she gets back. Keep in mind that the viciousness is a big part of the reason why Fox News wanted her to do a primetime show in the first place.
If the Fox “News” suits plan to keep this cafeteria Catholic tart move her to the weekends. Replace her primetime slot with Bret Baier or Chris Wallace.
NOTE TO MS. LAURA
YOU mocking minors who survived a mass school shooting that left their peers dead is a disgrace. How would YOU feel if some lame host mocked YOUR children after a tragedy. You would go nuts and use your show as a platform to attack those who attack your children.
YOU are a disgusting and sad excuse for a woman, and an embarrassment to your children, your late mother’s memory, and the Catholic church.
YOU are a breast cancer survivor. Some women died from the disease. YOU are still alive. YOU had the opportunity to change your nasty attitude, but you can’t tame a viper snake.
Do the right thing and resign from Fox “News.” Go back to practicing law.