Roger Ailes died of bleeding on the brain

The man who built Fox News into a TV giant before his ouster past year has died.

Ailes died at 77, his wife said in a statement Thursday morning.

Roger Stone, the controversial and colorful Republican strategist who worked on the Trump campaign, also praised Ailes on Twitter, calling him "a good friend, great American and communications genius".

"During a career that stretched over more than five decades, his work in entertainment, in politics, and in news affected the lives of many millions".

According to a Palm Beach police report, a caller contacted 911 dispatchers just before 2 p.m. on May 10, saying Ailes had fallen in his bathroom, hit his head and had serious bleeding.

In 2016, Ailes stepped down from his post as CEO after he was accused of sexual harassment by Fox News employee, Gretchen Carlson.

Ailes was sacked from Fox News previous year after he was accused of sexual harassment by more than 25 women. Ailes vehemently denied them.

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich is adding his voice to those mourning Fox News Channel founder Roger Ailes.

Ailes started Fox News nearly from scratch in 1996.

Discussing Ailes' impact on politics and culture in the U.S., Sherman said, "One of Ailes' lasting legacies will be that for millions of Americans, news is now no longer viewed as a way to be informed about the world; it's a way of gathering information that advances your side".

"Roger and I shared a big idea which he executed in a way no one else could have", Murdoch wrote of Ailes, who died Thursday morning at age 77.

Mr Ailes served as a consultant to presidents from Mr Richard Nixon to Mr Ronald Reagan to Mr George H.W. Bush.

Ailes' career in television began in Cleveland and Philadelphia, where he started as Property Assistant (1962), Producer (1965), and Executive Producer (1967-68) for KYW-TV. Concluding that viewers would never warm to Nixon, nor would the media establishment, Ailes struck a winning formula by packaging him in comfortably staged TV town-hall meetings as a man whose intelligence the audience would respect.

His admirers, and even his critics, agree that Roger Ailes dramatically changed the media landscape, with Fox News, back in 1996.

After leaving the company he reportedly helped Donald Trump prepare for the debates during his presidential campaign.

"He really did as much as anyone to redefine the Republican Party as a party of cultural populism. making resentment of the media, resentment of elites, resentment of liberals who were soft on crime and soft on national security central to what the Republican Party was about", David Greenberg, a Rutgers University political scientist, told AFP.

"You don't get President Trump without Roger Ailes", CNN political analyst Julian Zelizer said.

  • Larry Hoffman