Another Fox show is facing drug advertiser dropouts this week. Allergan is the latest to jumped ship on a Fox show, while Novo Nordisk said it is “re-evaluating” its ad support several days after Jeanine Pirro made controversial comments about a Muslim Congresswoman.
On her Saturday evening show, Pirro questioned Rep. Ilhan Omar’s wearing of a hijab as “antithetical” to the U.S. Constitution. Fox News Channel condemned her comments, issuing a statement that said Pirro’s comments “do not reflect those of the network and we have addressed the matter with her directly.”
However, advertisers were not mollified, and Allegan confirmed to FiercePharma that “we will not be advertising on the Jeanine Pirro program moving forward.” It last ran ads for Botox Cosmetic on the show Saturday.
Novo Nordisk, which has advertised diabetes drug Ozempic on the show, said in a statement to FiercePharma that it is rethinking its media placements.
“At Novo Nordisk, we advertise across many cable networks to raise awareness of our medicines and the disease they treat. We respect each person’s right to express their thinking and beliefs, however, we are reevaluating our advertising on this program at this time.”
Bayer and Celgene also advertise on Pirro’s show, but they did not respond to requests for comment by deadline.
The Pirro pharma defections come as AstraZeneca said it had abandoned another Fox show and Bayer faced social media pressure to do so after tapes from host Tucker Carlson’s radio show call-ins were released. In the recorded comments, Carlson defended a child-bride marriage, used the c-word to describe a woman, said Iraq was filled with “semiliterate, primitive monkeys” and made lewd comments about teen beauty pageant contestants—among other things.
Last April, both Johnson & Johnson and Bayer stopped advertising on Fox host Laura Ingraham’s show after she belittled a Parkland student shooting survivor over college rejections.
Pharma companies often advertise their products on news shows considered both “right” and “left” on the political spectrum, not necessarily to support specific views, but to reach their desired target demographic of older Americans who tend to watch news shows. For instance, in 2017, the median age of CNN viewers was 60, while the median age of Fox News and MSNBC viewers was 65, according to Adweek.