Fox News pulls liberal billionaire's Trump impeachment ad after 'strong negative reaction' from viewers

Billionaire Tom Steyer complains about Fox News pulling his ad
(Image credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Two weeks ago, billionaire donor and liberal activist Tom Steyer launched a $10 million ad buy for his 60-second spot arguing for the impeachment of President Trump, and on Monday, his lawyer accused Fox News of reneging on its contract to air the commercial another seven times this week. Fox News doesn't dispute that it pulled the ad. "Due to the strong negative reaction to their ad by our viewers, we could not in good conscience take their money," Fox News co-president Jack Abernethy said in a statement. One of those viewers was apparently Trump. After Steyer's ad played three times on Fox & Friends on Oct. 27, Trump tweeted: "Wacky & totally unhinged Tom Steyer, who has been fighting me and my Make America Great Again agenda from beginning, never wins elections!"

Steyer's lawyer Brad Deutsch said Fox News had "unconditionally" agreed to broadcast Steyer's ad this week, calling the decision to pull the spot "baseless and unethical" and "a profound failure of journalistic integrity, a suppression of constitutionally protected speech, and likely a consequence of inexcusable political pressure." Deutsch said 1.5 million Americans have signed Steyer's impeachment petition. Impeachment is more popular than you might expect in Trump's first year, but there's almost no chance the Republican-led Congress will act on Steyer's suggestion.

Subscribe to The Week

Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.


Sign up for The Week's Free Newsletters

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up
To continue reading this article...
Continue reading this article and get limited website access each month.
Get unlimited website access, exclusive newsletters plus much more.
Cancel or pause at any time.
Already a subscriber to The Week?
Not sure which email you used for your subscription? Contact us
Peter Weber, The Week US

Peter has worked as a news and culture writer and editor at The Week since the site's launch in 2008. He covers politics, world affairs, religion and cultural currents. His journalism career began as a copy editor at a financial newswire and has included editorial positions at The New York Times Magazine, Facts on File, and Oregon State University.