In a cagey interview on CNN on Thursday, former Alaska governor Sarah Palin declined to give a direct answer when anchor Jake Tapper asked whether she witnessed or experienced sexual harassment when she was a Fox News contributor.
TAPPER: Did you ever witness or experience, God forbid, anything like that at Fox?
PALIN: I wouldn't put up with anything that would be perceived as intimidating or harassing.
TAPPER: But you said you're “former,” so was that part of the reason you left?
PALIN: Um, you can ask them why I'm no longer at Fox. You know, I'm not going to speak for them. My contract wasn't renewed — that is, um, that's the line.
TAPPER: I don't want to be a jerk, but it sounds like you experienced something.
PALIN: Um, I just, you know, it was just time to part ways and get out there in, you know, I guess a more diverse arena to express views and speak for the public, and that's what I've been able to do now.
TAPPER: All right, well, I'm not going to push any farther on that.
Palin didn't say yes, but she didn't exactly say no, either, and she spoke generally about the need for reform at Fox News.
“Corporate culture there obviously has to change,” Palin said. “Women don't deserve it. They should not ever have to put up with any kind of intimidating workspace.”
Palin was, of course, reacting to the ouster of Bill O'Reilly, who along with the network settled multiple sexual harassment suits over the years. Fox News's longtime chairman, Roger Ailes, was forced out under similar circumstances last summer.
We don't know the details of Palin's experience at Fox News, but we do know her view that “corporate culture there obviously has to change” comes from an insider's perspective.