Former Fox News chairman and CEO Roger Ailes distributed a 400-page document with details about the property records, voter registration, lack of criminal record and wedding of journalist and Ailes biographer Gabe Sherman, according to CNNMoney.
Ailes’ lengthy opposition research, which CNNMoney said it had obtained from anonymous individuals who still fear retaliation by Ailes, is dated two years before the publication of Sherman’s unauthorized 2014 book about the executive, “The Loudest Voice in the Room.”
The book detailed numerous tales of Ailes’ alleged inappropriate behavior at the network he co-founded in 1996.
Sherman has been out in front of the Ailes sexual harassment news, breaking several stories in New York Magazine about the internal investigation of Ailes that was kicked off by Gretchen Carlson’s lawsuit against the former Fox News boss.
Ailes’ opposition research also detailed Sherman’s address and mortgage, various tweets and Internet message board comments and even details of his wedding, according to CNNMoney.
“I always wondered why Ailes was so obsessed and paranoid about Gabe’s book,” a former Fox News staffer told CNNMoney.
CNNMoney’s Brian Stelter wrote, “The mere existence of the memo shows how Ailes’ allies went to extreme lengths to investigate the reporter.”
“The Loudest Voice in the Room” is chock full of allegations that hurt the reputation of the former Republican operative who launched Fox News into a highly profitable cable news behemoth.
Network representatives have attempted to discredit Sherman and his reporting in recent years — before Carlson’s lawsuit resulted in numerous women coming forward with claims of sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior by Ailes and other senior executives.
Sherman declined TheWrap’s request for comment. Ailes has denied all sexual harassment allegations.