Post-Ailes Fox News: Kirsten Powers out
As conservatives hold their breath hoping Fox News will remain a true alternative to the homogenized progressive media, the game of musical chairs has begun in the wake of the departure of Roger Ailes under a cloud of sexual harassment accusations. The first overt move was announced yesterday on Twitter:
Later, CNN issued a longer statement:
Kirsten Powers will join CNN as a political analyst effective immediately, CNN Worldwide President Jeff Zucker announced today. In addition to her role as a CNN contributor, Powers will continue to provide her political expertise as a USA Today contributor.
Most recently, Powers served as a political analyst for Fox News and provided commentary across the network’s daytime and primetime programming and was a member of the Fox News’ election team covering election nights, presidential debates and other special programming.
Prior to her career in journalism, Powers held various communication roles during her time at the New York State Democratic Committee, and has consulted for non-profit organizations, including Human Rights First and the National Council for Research on Women. Powers was also Vice President for International Communications at America Online, Inc. Powers began her career as a staff assistant at the office of President-Elect Bill Clinton and later was a political appointee in the Clinton Administration where she served as Deputy Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Public Affairs.
In addition to USA Today, Powers’ writing has also been published in The Wall Street Journal, the Dallas Morning News, the New York Observer, Salon.com, the New York Post, Elle magazine and American Prospect online.
There is no way for an outside observer to know if Powers leaped or if she was pushed. In her frequent appearances on The O’Reilly Factor, she appeared frustrated with her inability to break through the format controlled by the biggest of Big Foot on-air talent at Fox.
Powers is one of my favorite liberals – utterly sincere, tolerant and intelligent. My guess is that her Fox gig has cost her many old friends. I know, because she has publicly spoken about it, that a profound religious experience that led her to embrace a personal commitment to Jesus Christ has cost her friends on the left.
Will she revert to a more classic, dogmatic form of liberalism now that her gut-level beliefs will be challenged less? I certainly hope not.
We all struggle to find a means to remain true to our beliefs while navigating a world that is not always open to them. I wish Powers well at her new gig and hope she continues to be honest and open about her beliefs and her willingness to hear them challenged, even if that is a less frequent experience from now on.