Scott Brown Named in Fox Host’s Sexual Harassment Suit
The allegation appears in a lawsuit filed by Andrea Tantaros, one of many women at the network who have spoken out in recent weeks about alleged abuse under ousted CEO Roger Ailes.
Brown, according to the suit, made “sexually inappropriate comments” on the set of the TV show Outnumbered, and later “snuck up behind” Tantaros and “put his hands on her lower waist.”
The incident was intended to be an example of a toxic culture at the network. She says she complained about Brown to Fox executive Bill Shine, but he did nothing about it. She also, through the suit, claims to have been harassed by Fox host Bill O’Reilly and called the media company “a sex-fueled, Playboy Mansion-like cult, steeped in intimidation, indecency, and misogyny.”
Here’s the part of the lawsuit that mentions Brown, excerpted on the website ThinkProgress:
On or about August 18, 2015, former Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown (“Brown”) appeared on Outnumbered. Brown made a number of sexually inappropriate comments to Tantaros on set, including, and in a suggestive manner, that Tantaros “would be fun to go to a nightclub with.” After the show was over, Brown snuck up behind Tantaros while she was purchasing lunch and put his hands on her lower waist. She immediately pulled back, telling Brown to “stop.” Tantaros then immediately met with Shine to complain, asking him to ensure that Brown would never be booked on the show again. Shine said that he would talk to Scott. Thereafter, Shine and Scott ignored Tantaros’s complaint, and continued to book Brown on Outnumbered.
Brown responded to the claims in a statement to Politico reporter Hadas Gold.
“Completely and totally false,” he said, according to a tweet from Gold. “Firstly, I don’t go to clubs. Secondly, I had little if any cotact [sic] with Ms Tantaros and always treated her and every other employee at Fox with professionalism. I was unaware of the matter. Thank you for bringing it up to me.”
— Hadas Gold (@Hadas_Gold) August 23, 2016
Brown, who lost a bid to keep his Senate seat in a race against Elizabeth Warren in 2012, and then unsuccessfully ran for Senate in New Hampshire, is now, among other things, a paid Fox News contributor.
He was accused of harassment once before, in a 2000 lawsuit. In 2010, after Brown’s blockbuster Senate win over Martha Coakley, Gawker dug up the documents from the case, in which a woman accused him of harassing, then trying to defame her during his 1998 campaign to become a state representative—which he denied. The accuser, a Wrentham woman on that town’s Board of Selectmen, withdrew the suit.