2018-07-01 02:14:48 UTC
"At first, (Laurie) Luhn didn’t see much of Ailes at Fox. But after the network was up and running, she said, the hotel meetings resumed. Now he began calling her to New York for encounters. They developed a system. She says that Ailes or Fox executive Bill Shine would call then–Washington bureau chief Kim Hume and tell her there was a “booking meeting” in New York that Luhn needed to attend. (Through a spokesperson, Shine confirmed he called Luhn to New York for booking meetings.)
They met in the afternoons, she said, usually at the DoubleTree in Times Square, sometimes the Renaissance — Fox people preferred the Muse. “It was always the on-my-knees, hold-my-temples routine. There was no affair, no sex, no love,” she said. Ailes continued to give Luhn cash afterward, and she began racking up personal expenses on her Fox News credit card. (Luhn said she always paid the bills back.)
As she was promoted through the ranks at Fox, Luhn worked harder and harder to please Ailes. She zealously promoted the network’s right-wing agenda. “I was very proud of the product. I was very proud of how we handled 9/11. Very proud of how we handled the run-up to the Iraq War,” she said. “My job was to sell the war. I needed to get people on the air that were attractive and articulate and could convey the importance of this campaign. It was a drumbeat.”
Luhn said she sensed her colleagues in the Washington bureau gossiped about her frequent trips to New York and treated her suspiciously. She is convinced that many people at Fox News knew about what was going on with Ailes. “They all knew there was quid pro quo,” Luhn recalled. Two former Fox employees confirmed people knew Ailes was involved with Luhn.
A former colleague in Fox's Washington bureau said that Luhn was "dysfunctional” at work. “No one knew what the heck she did,” the colleague said. “She was a ‘protected person’ and left alone."
Luhn’s relationship with her boss at the time, Washington bureau chief Kim Hume (Brit Hume's wife), became strained. Hume threatened to fire her when she submitted an expense report for the DoubleTree hotel, Luhn recalled. “She said, ‘Do you expect me to sign that? I can get you out of here. I’d get you six weeks of severance.’” (Hume did not respond to a request for comment.)
In 2004, Luhn told Ailes about Hume’s suspicions. Ailes came up with a solution: Luhn got a promotion and a raise, and she would report to Ailes’s deputy Shine. Ailes summoned Luhn to New York to tell her the news, Luhn said. Then he told her to call Hume, from his extension, and inform her that she would no longer be reporting to her. She did, she told me, and Hume hung up. Ailes was sending a message to the bureau chief: Luhn was protected by him. Inside Fox News, Luhn became known as an “FOR” — friend of Roger. After the call, according to Luhn, Ailes turned to her and said, “Now, remember, you’re Doris Day. Go put your uniform on, get over to the DoubleTree, and thank me for this."
Around this time, Ailes’s star Bill O’Reilly was accused by a Fox producer named Andrea Mackris of engaging in unwanted phone sex with her. O’Reilly settled with her for a reported $10 million. Despite the obvious risks, Ailes’s sexual demands only grew more intense after he promoted Luhn, she said. On three occasions, twice at the Renaissance and once at the Omni Berkshire, she said, Ailes demanded that she engage in sadomasochistic sex with another woman while he watched. The final such session occurred in the summer of 2005, Luhn recalled. Ailes snapped pictures. Afterward, he left $1,000 on the dresser and invited the two women to a party at Elaine’s on the Upper East Side, Luhn said. “I remember him being there holding court.”
Former Fox News Booker Says She Was Sexually Harassed And ‘Psychologically Tortured’ By Roger Ailes for More Than 20 Years
New York Magazine - July 29, 2016