Juan Williams, just fired by NPR for saying he gets nervous when flying on planes with Muslim passengers, now has himself a new $2 million, three-year Fox News Channel contract, according to The Los Angeles Times.
The Fox News contributor will now appear exclusively and more frequently on the cable news network and have a regular column on FoxNews.com.
“Juan has been a staunch defender of liberal viewpoints since his tenure began at Fox News in 1997,” Ailes said in a statement, adding a jab at NPR: “He’s an honest man whose freedom of speech is protected by Fox News on a daily basis.”
Meanwhile, conservative leaders lambasted NPR for firing Williams and called for cutting public funding for the media organisation. By midafternoon Thursday, more than 4,900 comments had been posted on NPR.org, including many from people who said the media organisation was bowing to political correctness and unfairly punishing Williams for expressing his personal opinions.
And here’s the official release, just in from FNC:
FOX News has re-signed Juan Williams to an expanded role with the network in a multi-year deal, announced Roger Ailes, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, FOX News. Currently a contributor and a regular substitute host for The O’Reilly Factor, Williams will host the primetime program tomorrow night for Bill O’Reilly and will appear as a guest with him tonight.
In making the announcement, Ailes said, “Juan has been a staunch defender of liberal viewpoints since his tenure began at FOX News in 1997. He’s an honest man whose freedom of speech is protected by FOX News on a daily basis.”
Williams joined FNC in 1997 as a contributor and is a regular panelist on FOX Broadcasting’s Sunday morning public affairs program, FOX News Sunday, as well as the weekday political newscast, Special Report with Bret Baier. In addition to his more than 10-year career with NPR, where he was a senior national correspondent and news analyst, William had spent 23 years at the Washington Post. During his tenure at the Post, Williams covered every major political campaign from 1980 to 2000 as a national correspondent and a political columnist.
Williams’ career in media spans back several decades across many platforms. A recipient of several awards for his writing and investigative journalism, he also won an Emmy Award for television documentary writing and has received widespread critical acclaim for numerous projects, including a series of documentaries such as “Politics: The New Black Power” and “A. Phillip Randolph: For Jobs and Freedom.” Additionally, he is the author of six books, including the non-fiction bestseller, “Eyes on the Prize: America’s Civil Rights Years, 1954-1965” and “Thurgood Marshall: American Revolutionary.” Williams has also written numerous articles and has contributed to many national magazines including TIME, Fortune, The Atlantic Monthly, The New Republic, Ebony and GQ.
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