Fox News Benches Dick Morris And Karl Rove

It looks like there’s been a little post-election reshuffling going on at Fox News:

The post-election soul searching going on inside the Republican Party is taking place inside Fox News as well. Fox News chief Roger Ailes, a canny marketer and protector of his network’s brand, has been taking steps since November to reposition Fox in the post-election media environment, freshening story lines — and in some cases, changing the characters. According to multiple Fox sources, Ailes has issued a new directive to his staff: He wants the faces associated with the election off the air — for now. For Karl Rove and Dick Morris — a pair of pundits perhaps most closely aligned with Fox’s anti-Obama campaign — Ailes’s orders mean new rules. Ailes’s deputy, Fox News programming chief Bill Shine, has sent out orders mandating that producers must get permission before booking  Rove or  Morris. Both pundits made several appearances in the days after the election, but their visibility on the network has dropped markedly. Inside Fox News, Morris’s Romney boosterism and reality-denying predictions became a punch line. At a rehearsal on the Saturday before the election, according to a source, anchor Megyn Kelly chuckled when she relayed to colleagues what someone had told her: “I really like Dick Morris. He’s always wrong but he makes me feel good.”

Even the people at Fox don’t take them seriously.

FILED UNDER: 2012 Election, Environment, US Politics, , , , , , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Brummagem Joe says:

    These changes (even they remove the most strident if silly Republican voices) just confirm what we all know. Fox News is not a legitimate news outlet it’s simply a propaganda arm of the Republcan party.

  2. Argon says:

    Showbiz is harsh. I hear that things are getting so scary that even Bill Kristol has been forced to make a couple accurate predictions recently.

    Now if we could get networks to do the same with McCain.

  3. C. Clavin says:

    This is censorship!!!
    The Constitution gaurantees a persons right to be absolutely and completely wrong on a consistent basis.
    Why does Fox News hate America so much???

  4. Tsar Nicholas says:

    Dick Morris never did have a clue. And by creating governance by opinion poll during the Clinton years he did a lot of real damage out there in the real world, not merely on TV.

    The thing about Rove that I always found bizarre is that even when he was running winning campaigns it was in spite of himself. This notion of Rove the evil genius mad scientist, pulling the strings like the puppet master, patently is frivolous. W. Bush’s “victory tour” in California in late-October 2000, while Team Gore was camped out in Florida, arguably was the worst pure political blunder in a full generation. And in ’04 Team Rove somehow managed to turn a contest against a walking corpse of a Dem nominee into all things considered a fairly close election, despite the fact W. Bush was a wartime incumbent presiding over a growing economy.

    In any event, Fox is the only cable news network with an actual audience (the others are below Cartoon Channel levels; literally) and given that it’s a business enterprise with paying customers who wish at least to maintain that audience it only makes sense for Morris and Rove to be phased out.

  5. Fiona says:

    I’m betting that Palin is the next Fox analyst to get the boot.

    Fiona :catblink:

  6. Just Me says:

    I loath Dick Morris but like a bad penny he will probably continue to turn up.

    I don’t even think he is all that politically savvy even though at one time he was considered to be savvy.

  7. David M says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    Fox News is not a legitimate news outlet it’s simply a propaganda arm of the Republcan party.

    I’m not sure this is actually true anymore. It could be the GOP is the political arm of FOX and the CEC.

  8. stonetools says:

    The problem with the Fox pundit lineup is not that they were wrong: its that they looked stupid. Its one thing to be wrong: its another to look so bumblingly incompetent that you can’t find your rear end with your own two hands. That’s how Rove at al. looked.

    Fox has a brand to maintain . They can look conservative but they can’t look so stupid that even their audience notices.

  9. CSK says:


    Her contract with Fox runs out in January 2013. It will be interesting to see if Ailes renews it. He was furious when she made her announcement not to run in 2012 on another program. Whatever novelty value she had to Fox seems to have faded. But, like many pundits, I could be wrong in predicting that she’s on the way out the door.

  10. LeftyLucy007 says:

    I am betting Palin’s next gig is one of three conspiracy theory a day internet rags:, or

  11. An Interested Party says:

    Dick Morris never did have a clue.

    That’s rather rich…one piece of stovetop cookware criticizing another…

  12. Tillman says:

    And nothing of value was lost.