Fox News anchor Bill O'Reilly loses ads over sex harassment claims

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O'Reilly has always taken the sides of racists and misogynists in the news and promoted schools of thought that undermine the value of women, LGBTQ people, and people of color.

On Monday, Fox News contributor Julie Roginsky also filed a lawsuit against the network, claiming that she was offered a promotion to be a regular host of the show The Five - but only if she would have sex with former network president Roger Ailes.

Major advertisers have begun cancelling spots on America's most-watched cable news show following reports of sexual harassment involving the star, Fox News host Bill O'Reilly. But, as the Times reported, The O'Reilly Factor generated $446 million in revenue between 2014 and 2016.

"We value our partners and are working with them to address their current concerns about The O'Reilly Factor", Paul Rittenberg, Fox News executive VP advertising sales, said in a statement regarding the advertisers.

A BMW spokesman said the German auto giant was suspending ads for the program "in light of the recent New York Times investigation". Companies who advertised on the FNC program were subjected to severe backlashes on social media.

"While it's hard to tell what the facts are, the allegations are disturbing", Mercedes-Benz spokeswoman Donna Boland said.

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"The O'Reilly Factor" had lost about a dozen advertisers by Tuesday, with German carmaker BMW, Japan's Mitsubishi and US-based insurance company Allstate pulling their ads from the show. "We will continue to closely monitor the situation but believe this is the right decision at this time". The company assured reporters it has reassigned its O'Reilly ads "in the midst of this controversy".

Fox News is being probed by the feds for allegedly concealing its sexual harassment settlements from investors. Nevertheless, O'Reilly's contract which is set to expire at the end of the year was renewed.

O'Reilly has denied the allegations, saying he put "controversies" to rest in order to spare his children.

The claims made against O'Reilly include one from a former on-air talent who said she was propositioned by the anchor and suffered recriminations and a loss of opportunities within Fox News after turning him down. As Variety reports, most of the breaks on last night's program consisted of promos for Fox Business Network. There were seven ads for financial services firm Voya.

It's amusing to imagine leaders of a company like Hyundai thinking, until this very moment, that The O'Reilly Factor was a show that championed "inclusion and diversity".

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