Donna Brazile joined Fox News as a contributor and Paul Ryan now sits on the company’s board of directors. Almost on cue, the stock dropped precipitously.
Were they to blame?
People on social media sure seemed to think so. On Reddit, home of the popular and freewheeling pro-Trump subreddit /r/The_Donald, one popular post was titled “FOX STOCK IS PLUMMETING!!! Maybe hiring Donna Brazile and Paul Ryan wasn’t the best decision…?”
And then, of course, there was Twitter.
FOX STOCK DROPS 3% after they put Donna Brazile and removal of Judge Jeanine
— Obeytlaw (@Obeytlaw) March 20, 2019
Fox Stock drops 3% after suspension of Judge Jeanine and Donna Brazile appearance as well it should. It will go lower!! https://t.co/SKFOxvldxA
— charlene kennedy (@orabellelouise) March 20, 2019
#Fox went public on the stock exchange & immediately hired #RinoRyan & cheatin’ #Brazile, increasing the number of liberal socialists appearing daily.
Switched to #foxbusiness ~ a year ago but now they’re being invaded by #socialists; watch less as they digress into the #Swamp. https://t.co/ZGXZF21v7H
— BillofRights (@FixUSANow) March 21, 2019
So, did Fox’s stock drop? Yes. In fact, as The Street notes, it was down 3.25 percent on Monday to $40.17 a share. It’s recovered somewhat to $41.70 a share, but still nowhere near where it was.
But here’s the problem: It has nothing to do with Donna Brazile, or Paul Ryan or even Judge Jeanine’s suspension.
Here’s my gross oversimplification of a complicated issue. In 2018, Disney acquired 21st Century Fox for $71.3 billion.
“We are extremely proud of the businesses we have built at 21st Century Fox, and firmly believe that this combination with Disney will unlock even more value for shareholders as the new Disney continues to set the pace at a dynamic time for our industry,” Rupert Murdoch said when he agreed to the acquisition, according to CNET.
On March 20, according to the SEC filing, the merger took effect. However, there were certain entities that didn’t get absorbed into the new company — including Fox News, Fox Broadcasting and Fox Sports. All three of those would be under the new entity known as the Fox Corporation.
The new entity took over the old stock ticker names that Fox used — FOX and FOXA. And it wasn’t just confusion that had the stocks trading lower, according to the Motley Fool.
“Of the 26% of (21st Century Fox) that New Fox got, New Fox shareholders received about 1.26 shares for each single share of (21st Century Fox), which explains why the FOX and FOXA tickers are trading about 22% lower than yesterday,” they reported. “Based on the distribution agreement, shares of New Fox are worth about 22% less than shares of (21st Century Fox).”
Further drops occurred likely due to confusion over the reshuffle and stuff like that. So, no, Donna Brazile didn’t kill Fox’s stock.
Yes, Brazile threw pretty much everyone involved in the DNC and the 2016 campaign under a fleet of buses with her memoir, fittingly titled “Hacks.”
However, it didn’t take long for her to insult the audience of her new employer.
In fact, she managed to do it in the statement announcing that she was joining the network. In it, Brazile acknowledged that she would get some pushback from her liberal coterie, but “if we’ve learned anything from the 2016 election, it is that we can’t have a country where we don’t talk to those who disagree with our political views.
“There’s an audience on Fox News that doesn’t hear enough from Democrats,” she said. “We have to engage that audience and show Americans of every stripe what we stand for rather than retreat into our ‘safe spaces’ where we simply agree with each other.
“For there is no safety in self-limiting numbers,” she continued. “You can be darn sure that I’m still going to be me on Fox News. I’m going to do what I always do: and dish it out straight, exactly as I see it, with just as much New Orleans hot sauce as folks expect.”
The assumption that most Fox News viewers don’t hear enough from Democrats is a rather insulting assumption. In fact, you can turn on virtually any other channel and hear as much about Democrats as you want. In fact, you can also hear them on Fox News.
Congratulations, Brazile, for reinforcing every stereotype about liberals and their opinions on Fox News that you could.
Neither Donna Brazile nor her New Orleans hot sauce is responsible for the stock price drop. That still doesn’t mean she was a good hire. In fact, if her statement upon joining the channel was any indication, this has the potential to be a serious disaster.
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