The Rove reversal: Fox takes Republican star down a peg

Pundit sidelined after on-air row over Ohio result on election night

Karl Rove, grand pontificator and schemer of the American right, suffered fresh humiliation today with word that the welcome mat at Fox News has been partially withdrawn, possibly as punishment for an on-air tantrum on election night.

Long revered by conservatives as the brain who put George W Bush in office in 2000 and subsequently as the top White House strategist, Mr Rove turned to Fox, which is owned by Rupert Murdoch, to help keep himself relevant when the White House went Democrat.

Mr Rove has not been banned from Fox entirely. But producers have allegedly received word from the head of programming, Bill Shine, that in future they must receive specific permission if they want to book Mr Rove for an interview. Mr Shine, according to New York magazine, was acting on direct instructions from Roger Ailes, the all-powerful founder of Fox News and close confidant of Mr Murdoch. It has been a trying few weeks for Mr Rove. His side lost in November, of course, a defeat even more bitter for him as the founder of American Crossroads, one of the most active and richest of the conservative super-PACs created to defeat Barack Obama. His group spent $104m (£64.5m) backing Mitt Romney and other candidates.

Fox has also benched Dick Morris, the former Clinton White House aide who crossed to the Republican side. It could be that the network simply wants its viewers to forget the 2012 election ever happened. Or it has concluded that Mr Morris ,in particular, must be seen to suffer at least some kind of reprimand for insisting that Mr Romney was going to win and win big.

While Mr Rove may also have been guilty of overstating Mr Romney’s prospects in advance of polling, it was his performance on election night that has lingered longest in the collective political memory. Dubbed as the Rove meltdown and the Rove tantrum, it was not his finest hour.

It happened when Fox News called Ohio for Mr Obama. Mr Rove challenged the Fox call live on air, insisting that the network had been too hasty. “We gotta be careful about calling the thing,” Mr Rove said, offering numbers suggesting that Ohio remained close. “I’d be very cautious about intruding in on this process.”

If Messrs Rove and Morris are feeling sheepish about the outcome of the 2012 election and their parts in it, one man who isn’t is Sheldon Adelson, the Las Vegas casino tycoon and champion of Israel and all things conservative. He has told The Wall Street Journal he has no regrets about spending more than $100m of his own money on Mr Romney and other Republican candidates.

“I’ll spend that much and more,” next time around, Mr Adelson told the paper.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Online Media Sales Trainee

£15000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Now our rapidly expanding and A...

Recruitment Genius: Public House Manager / Management Couples

£15000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you passionate about great ...

Recruitment Genius: Production Planner

£20000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing reinforcing s...

Recruitment Genius: General Factory Operatives

£18000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing reinforcing s...

Day In a Page

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

Mussolini tried to warn his ally of the danger of bringing the country to its knees. So should we, says Patrick Cockburn
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign

The short stroll that should be our walk of shame

Courting the global elite has failed to benefit Britain, as the vast disparity in wealth on display in the capital shows
Homeless Veterans appeal: The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty

Homeless Veterans appeal

The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty
Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king

Prince Charles the saviour of the nation?

A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
How books can defeat Isis: Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad

How books can defeat Isis

Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

She may be in charge of minimising our risks of injury, but the chair of the Health and Safety Executive still wants children to be able to hurt themselves
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse

The open loathing between Obama and Netanyahu just got worse

The Israeli PM's relationship with the Obama has always been chilly, but going over the President's head on Iran will do him no favours, says Rupert Cornwell
French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

Fury at British best restaurants survey sees French magazine produce a rival list
Star choreographer Matthew Bourne gives young carers a chance to perform at Sadler's Wells

Young carers to make dance debut

What happened when superstar choreographer Matthew Bourne encouraged 27 teenage carers to think about themselves for once?
Design Council's 70th anniversary: Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch

Design Council's 70th anniversary

Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch
Dame Harriet Walter: The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment

Dame Harriet Walter interview

The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment
Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Critics of Tom Stoppard's new play seem to agree that cerebral can never trump character, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's winter salads will make you feel energised through February

Bill Granger's winter salads

Salads aren't just a bit on the side, says our chef - their crunch, colour and natural goodness are perfect for a midwinter pick-me-up
England vs Wales: Cool head George Ford ready to put out dragon fire

George Ford: Cool head ready to put out dragon fire

No 10’s calmness under pressure will be key for England in Cardiff
Michael Calvin: Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links