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Keith Olbermann: ‘Roger Ailes Encouraged Me To Join Him’

Did Fox News try to hire Keith Olbermann in the late 90s?

That’s what the MSNBC host is saying in a Daily Kos comment left last night. He’s hinted at it before, but this time, he gets specific.

Here’s the key part of the comment, that was left on a post thanking Olbermann for bringing the health care situation in America to light:

Politically, nothing should steel you more than knowing that the day NBC finally agreed to free me from our all-Lewinsky show in November 1998 and sold my contract to Fox Sports, as I went to the news conference to announce it I was intercepted in the lobby by John Moody, Fox’s News VP, begging me to also work for him. This followed by a few months a note from Roger Ailes encouraging me to join him.

And then I became the devil.

Just imagine for a second the possibility Olbermann could have accepted a hypothetical job at the young, up-and-coming Fox News Channel in the 1998 or 1999. Would he have his own Countdown-like show? Would it have been Hannity and Olbermann? Or would he have been in and out of the job, as he was at Fox Sports?

An FNC spokesperson tells Mediaite: “It appears that Keith’s ratings plunge has driven him deeper into the world of delusion.”

While Olbermann had the #2 show on cable news in February at 8pmET, behind FNC, the show is down 29% in total viewers and 43% in the A25-54 demographic year-to-year. Although if he is remembering the circumstances incorrectly, as FNC is implying, maybe there’s a different reason than ratings – like his ailing father.

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