NY Times: Fox Biz Flirting with CNN’s Lou Dobbs

October 12th, 2009 12:29 PM

Is Fox News Channel president Roger Ailes about to score another big name personality for his fledgling off-spin business channel? According to The New York Times television and digital media reporter Brian Stelter, News Corp's (NASDAQ:NWS) Fox Business Network is considering adding CNN "Lou Dobbs Tonight" host Lou Dobbs to its lineup.

"The business channel is also keen on another administration critic, Lou Dobbs, who met for dinner with Mr. Ailes last month, according to two people with direct knowledge of the meeting," Stelter wrote in a piece for the Oct. 12 Times about the growing divide between Fox News and the Obama administration. "The shift for Fox News - the favorite network of the Bush administration, now the least favored one of the Obama administration - has financial implications for the News Corporation, especially given the network's status as a growth engine in a perilous time for media companies."

The move comes after Fox Business has added long-time ABC "20/20" co-anchor John Stossel and talk show shock jock Don Imus. And adding Imus has paid off, at least initially for Fox Business with one of its most-watched broadcasts in the networks history, even beating rival CNBC's "Squawk Box" in his debut.

Dobbs has been the target of a left-wing smear campaign for his criticism of the Obama administration. The liberal echo chamber has had a fixation with both Dobbs' 7 p.m. ET CNN broadcast and his syndicated daily radio show, dedicating a lot of time and resources to monitor it.

Dobbs' CNN show has regularly been the second-highest rated cable show in that time slot, albeit a distant second behind Fox News "Studio B," hosted by Shepard Smith, but ahead of MSNBC's replay of "Hardball with Chris Matthews."