Here's The Text Message That Got '60 Minutes' Boss Fired

'60 Minutes' executive producer Jeff Fager out at CBS

CBS says '60 Minutes' exec Jeff Fager out for violating company policy

CBS News President David Rhodes announced the departure on Wednesday.

Moonves stepped down as chairman and CEO of CBS that day, but the board is still waiting for its internal probe to wrap up before deciding if he can be fired for cause and denied a payout.

He said Mr Fager had "violated company policy", without elaborating on how.

Jericka Duncan, the reporter to whom Fager sent the message, revealed the contents of the text during Wednesday's edition of "CBS Evening News".

Questions about Fager's future at the network had been swirling ever since Farrow's first story came out.

A second New Yorker article published Sunday included more allegations against Moonves of sexual assault, harassment and intimidation.

The Talk panel agreed that Fager's text to Duncan was "threatening", rather that merely "harsh", as Fager has described it.

In a statement sent to CNN's Brian Stelter, Fager said his ouster had nothing to do with the New Yorker story. He acknowledged that his language in the text was "harsh", but said that "although journalists received harsh demands for fairness all the time, CBS didn't like it". "One such note should not result in termination after 36 years, but it did".

The text message from Fager represents an attempt to pull rank and intimidate a reporter, something that surely happens to investigative reporters all the time at CBS News.

"Like a lot of women in Hollywood, I am happy to dance on his professional grave", she wrote. "There are people who lost their jobs trying to harm me and if you pass on these damaging claims without your own reporting to back them up that will become a serious problem".

It was shortly after outlets began to pick up the news of Fager's exit that he released a statement of his own, in light of CBS News' refusing to comment on his specific violation. "I think it's important for you to know.that the entire team at Evening News supports you 100%". (FYI, CBS was home to both Murder, She Wrote and Cagney & Lacey.) Bloodworth Thomason said Moonves even removed the portraits of historic female television stars (Lucille Ball, Mary Tyler Moore, Candace Bergen, Bea Arthur) from the walls of the CBS studio, and she believes he deliberately changed the focus of the network to male-dominated shows like The Big Bang Theory and Two-and-a-Half Men.

Jeff Fager at the "60 Minutes" offices in NY on September 12, 2017. "This whole situation saddens me deeply". Would the company have cashiered Fager for that mere offense, absent the underlying claims? There's also some anger and apprehension. He returned as full-time executive producer at "60 Minutes" in 2015, and this fall would have marked his 15th as chief of the news magazine program. Staffers are are fiercely protective of the newsmagazine.

Rhodes' action against Fager also exacerbated the longstanding tensions between "60 Minutes" and the rest of the news division.

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