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Trump-boosting pillow magnate Mike Lindell, whose company MyPillow is one of Fox News’ largest advertisers, said on Thursday night that he is pulling his commercials from the network because they won’t run a commercial pushing baseless claims of voter fraud in the 2020 election.
The Wall Street Journal was the first to report on Lindell’s decision.
“Shame on Fox News! Shame on them,” Lindell told The Daily Beast. “When I was told they wouldn’t run the ad, I said to cut off advertising on Fox immediately and indefinitely.”
In response to Lindell’s claim that he was immediately pulling his ads, Fox News said in a statement: “It’s unfortunate Mr. Lindell has chosen to pause his commercial time on FOX News given the level of success he’s experienced in building his brand through advertising on the number one cable news network.”
Over the past few months, Lindell has increasingly voiced his displeasure with Fox News for not promoting or even mentioning his fruitless efforts to “prove” that Donald Trump lost the election through voter machine manipulation. President Joe Biden, in fact, decisively won the election. According to countless election officials and courts, there is no evidence that fraud was responsible for Trump’s electoral loss.
Lindell had become particularly incensed these past few weeks that the network wasn’t planning to cover his upcoming “cyber symposium,” which he’s long hyped would finally unveil incontrovertible evidence proving that Trump won the election. He’s even gone so far as to say recently that the data he would unveil about voting machine fraud would be so compelling that the Supreme Court would reinstate Trump next month with a unanimous ruling.
With the 72-hour symposium scheduled to live stream next month on his website FrankSpeech.com, Lindell told Salon last week that he planned to run ads on the network promoting the Sioux Falls event, since Fox was ignoring it.
“Fox [News] does not talk about anything with the election,” Lindell told Salon. “So I’m going to make ads that will talk about—at least advertising for FrankSpeech.com—that we’re going to be televising this [cyber symposium] for 72 hours straight.”
According to Lindell, however, Fox News had declined to run the commercial promoting the symposium, prompting him to tell his ad buyer to immediately cancel all his other ads on the network. Fox, meanwhile, did not say whether it refused to run the ad in question.
“They won’t even run an ad for directions for where people can watch the symposium online? Give me a break,” he added to The Daily Beast. “Things change, but right now I have no plans to ever advertise on Fox News again.”
While Fox News has rejected the ad, Lindell told Salon that the network's far-right competitors Newsmax and OAN have agreed to air the symposium commercial. OAN has previously aired Lindell’s “docu-movies” that supposedly revealed “absolute proof” of election fraud, albeit with a hefty disclaimer distancing the channel from his claims.
Lindell also said that the commercial didn’t specifically make any election fraud claims. At the same time, he has said that the symposium will conclusively prove that Trump won the election.
The pillow salesman added that he spent over $50 million on Fox News ads last year and has dropped another $19 million so far this year. According to the advertising analysis site iSpot.tv, MyPillow ranks among the network’s top five advertisers.
Lindell has found himself embroiled in legal hot water over his wild, groundless allegations that corrupt voting-machine software flipped millions of Trump votes to Biden. Voting machine manufacturer Dominion Voting Systems, for instance, filed a $1.3 billion defamation lawsuit against Lindell and his company. Lindell followed with a bizarre countersuit, claiming Dominion engaged in a racketeering conspiracy.
Dominion and voting software firm Smartmatic have also both filed lawsuits against Fox News, alleging the network’s hosts and guests made defamatory remarks and falsely accused the companies of defrauding the election. Fox News has filed motions to dismiss both cases, insisting that its coverage of the election fraud claims was both newsworthy and covered by the First Amendment.