NEW YORK - The head of Fox News Channel has issued a directive to staffers that prohibits any appearances on the network by conservative pundits Karl Rove and Dick Morris, at least temporarily.
Fox News chairman Roger Ailes has said the network needs to reinvent itself after the recent presidential election, according to New York magazine . Ailes told staffers that he wants the people most closely associated with the election off the air for now.
The two pundits were frequent guests on Fox News shows before the Nov. 6 election, predicting a landslide victory for Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney. Incumbent Barack Obama won, receiving 50.9 percent of the popular vote to Romney's 47.3 percent. Obama got 332 electoral votes to Romney's 206.
"Ailes's deputy, Fox News programming chief Bill Shine, has sent out orders mandating that producers must get permission before booking Rove or Morris," the magazine reported. Within the news organization, Morris' "Romney boosterism and reality-denying predictions" became a punchline among anchors and reporters, it added.
Regarding Rove, Fox News was embarrassed when the adviser to former President George W. Bush cautioned anchors on the air that they shouldn't yet call the election for President Obama, even though every other network had done so based on exit polling data and the results compiled by that time.
"Multiple sources say that Ailes was angry at Rove's election-night tantrum when he disputed the network's call for Obama," the magazine said.
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