"He wasn't flawless, but Roger Ailes was my friend & I loved him", the 41st president tweeted Thursday. In October 2013, he became the host of Shepard Smith Reporting as well as the managing editor of Fox News Channel's Breaking News Division.
"What happened in the previous year, frankly, it's an unfortunate blot but the truth is, if you look at his whole history, he did a lot for his country, regardless of what you believe in as far as politics are concerned", Gold said. Numerous women at Fox News, including former anchor Gretchen Carlson, alleged he sexually harassed them. He dismissed the allegations, but faced additional claims of misconduct.
Ailes was forced out 15 days after Carlson filed suit, with a reported $40 million payout.
Some former colleagues on Thursday praised his contributions and place in history.
"Today America lost one of its great patriotic warriors", he tweeted, adding, "He has dramatically and forever changed the political and the media landscape singlehandedly for the better".
"A brilliant broadcaster, Roger played a huge role in shaping America's media over the last 30 years", Murdoch said. He had a profound influence on American politics and the news media, which he transformed.
"He was as strong an American as you'll ever find".
Shortly after his resignation, he reportedly returned to politics.
Roger Ailes at a TCA event. "Roger and I shared a big idea which he executed in a way no one else could have", he said.
For much of the segment, Smith spoke glowingly of his "champion as he detailed his start at Fox News and recounted some of the major stories he covered under Ailes' watch - including Columbine and Hurricane Katrina".
Fox News chairman and CEO Roger Ailes speaks during a panel session titled "Democracy and the Media: Are They Compatible?" at the 2005 Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California, U.S. on April 19, 2005.
Ailes was a defendant in a pending sexual harassment case brought by Fox News contributor Julie Roginsky, who says she was denied a full-time job after rejecting Ailes' advances. Ailes went on to work in TV, and yet still became an important figure as a media adviser to Ronald Reagan, to George H.W. Bush. His behind-the-scenes work to shape a more appealing television image for Nixon during his successful 1968 presidential campaign was chronicled in Joe McGinniss' bestselling book, "The Selling of the President".
Ailes was at the helm of Bush's media operation when it ran a provocative ad that painted Bush's Democratic opponent, former Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis, as soft on crime.
"He wasn't ideal, but Roger Ailes was my friend & I loved him", chimed in George H.W. Bush.
"Roger Ailes has died".
"He made a difference", O'Reilly said of Ailes. "I am not going to exploit for political purposes my opponent's youth and inexperience".
"You don't get President Trump without Roger Ailes", CNN political analyst Julian Zelizer said.