Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump gathered a treasure trove of dirt about Fox News after network boss Roger Ailes called him to help in severance negotiations with an ex-adviser, according to a Sunday report from New York Magazine.
Writer Gabriel Sherman reported that before his 2014 Ailes biography was published, the Fox News founder fired longtime public relations adviser Brian Lewis, whom he accused of being a source for Sherman’s book. Lewis hired mega-litigator Judd Burstein, who briefly worked for Trump in the 1990s, and claimed he had “bombs” to drop that would take down both Ailes and Fox News.
That’s where Trump came in, according to the report.
“When Roger was having problems, he didn’t call 97 people, he called me,” Trump told New York Magazine. Sherman reported that Ailes called Trump to help with severance negotiations, which the billionaire held out of his Trump Tower office.
“Roger had lawyers, very expensive lawyers, and they couldn’t do anything. I solved the problem,” the GOP frontrunner told Sherman.
That settlement reportedly involved Fox News shelling out “millions” for Lewis to go quietly, with Trump netting everything the ex-Ailes confidant “had planned to leak.” The report doesn’t offer any specifics about the contents of those “bombs” or name any sources for the details of the settlement, however.
A Fox News spokesperson didn’t immediately respond Monday to a request for comment from TPM.