Report: Pharmaceutical company pulls ads from Fox News host Laura Ingraham

June 8, 2019

In the latest example of corporate virtue signaling, Fox News host Laura Ingraham has been reportedly dropped by multinational pharmaceutical corporation Bayer, a top advertiser. 

Bayer’s ads will no longer appear on Ingraham’s show “The Ingraham Angle,” or on Tucker Carlson’s “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” two of the cable news network’s most successful primetime opinion shows. Furious fans took to Twitter to voice their displeasure, some using the #BoycottBayer hashtag.

Bayer out

Left-leaning site ThinkProgress’ co-founder Jeff Legum reported on Bayer’s decision Thursday in his Popular Information newsletter.

In a tweet announcing the pullout, Legum referred to the German corporation as Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham’s “most prominent remaining brand advertiser.” However, in a follow-on tweet, Legum notes that “Bayer was Ingraham’s #2 overall advertiser this year, running 180 spots. Bayer was Tucker’s #5 advertiser.”

Fair weather friend

Although it’s not exactly clear why the drug manufacturer decided to bail, its public relations staff may have been responding to pressure from Legum, who broadcast the news that Bayer was once again advertising with Carlson after previously pledging to boycott the show earlier this year. The company was one of dozens of advertisers to cut ties with Carlson after liberal activist group Media Matters called attention to audio of the Fox News host making controversial statements on a comedy show years ago.

Bayer also participated in an advertiser bailout targeting Ingraham after she poked fun at school shooting survivor and gun control activist David Hogg for being rejected by four colleges. However, company executives reversed course just a few months later and have been regular sponsors of the conservative pundit’s show.

That is, until Legum shined a light on Bayer’s attempt to quietly resume business with two of the left’s most-hated conservative broadcasters.

Some journalists, however, have attempted to assign a different meaning to Bayer’s second boycott of the same Fox News shows, pointing to the most recent controversy involving the network’s anchors. In May, Ingraham listed known anti-Semite Paul Nehlen as one of the “prominent voices censored on social media” on a graphic displayed during a segment on free speech and social media censorship. Others listed included Alex Jones, Candace Owens, Milo Yiannopoulos, and James Woods — all of whom have been banned or restricted by Facebook and/or Twitter for various reasons.

While the mainstream media accused Ingraham of “defending” Nehlen by including him, in reality, she was discussing the importance of free speech, not defending any particular views.

Old bag of tricks

As well-spoken and influential conservative voices, both Ingraham and Carlson are prime targets for liberal advocacy groups who want them silenced under the guise of policing “hate speech.” Liberal organizations like Media Matters have invested time and money into pressuring corporate entities into cutting ties with pro-Trump pundits on the nation’s only widely-available right-leaning news outlet.

“A Fox News Lie is, A Fox News Lie Is, A Fox News Lie,” a full-page Media Matters ad found in The Hollywood Reporter read. “Whether your ad dollars go to Fox ‘News’ or Opinion, You’re still funding the same Fox News lies.”

Fortunately, the cable news outlet has so far stood by its hosts and refused to be cowed by the social justice left. Perhaps even more importantly, Fox News viewers don’t appear to be going anywhere, and the same personalities targeted by the left are dominating the cable news market more than ever.

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Benjamin Baird

Benjamin Baird is a senior staff writer for the Conservative Institute. He is a veteran infantryman of Iraq and Afghanistan with over 1000 days in combat and holds a degree in Middle Eastern studies from the American Military University. Ben is Writing Fellow at the Middle East Forum and has written for dozens of conservative publications, including The Daily Caller, American Spectator, American Thinker, New English Review and Jewish News Syndicate.