MEDIA
12/11/2017 04:24 pm ET Updated Dec 11, 2017

The New Yorker Severs Ties With Ryan Lizza Over 'Improper Sexual Conduct'

The reporter was the magazine's longtime Washington correspondent.

The New Yorker magazine said Monday that it had severed ties with Ryan Lizza, after learning the reporter had engaged in “improper sexual conduct,” according to a statement. 

“The New Yorker recently learned that Ryan Lizza engaged in what we believe was improper sexual conduct,” the magazine’s statement read. “We have reviewed the matter and, as a result, have severed ties with Lizza. Due to a request for privacy, we are not commenting further.”

Lizza, an on-air contributor for CNN and The New Yorker’s Washington correspondent from 2007 to 2017, made headlines in July for a bombshell interview with Anthony Scaramucci, the former White House communications director.  

CNN announced in a subsequent statement that Lizza “will not appear on CNN while we look into this matter.”

“I am dismayed that the New Yorker has decided to characterize a respectful relationship with a woman I dated as somehow inappropriate,” the statement read. “The New Yorker was unable to cite any company policy that was violated.”

The law firm representing an unnamed woman it identified as “the victim of Mr. Lizza’s misconduct” pushed back on the reporter’s version of events.

“In no way did Mr. Lizza’s misconduct constitute a ‘respectful relationship’ as he has now tried to characterize it,” Wigdor LLP partner Douglas Wigdor wrote in a statement to media on Monday. 

The law firm said that the woman reported Lizza’s actions both to ensure he would be held accountable and to help other potential victims by coming forward.

Ryan Lizza at the New Yorker Festival in Oct. 2009
Neilson Barnard via Getty Images
Ryan Lizza at the New Yorker Festival in Oct. 2009

Over the past year, a number of prominent men in broadcast, print and online media have been accused of sexual misconduct. 

In April, Fox News forced out cable news host Bill O’Reilly after a New York Times report revealed a number of sexual harassment allegations against him ― months after the network had ousted chairman Roger Ailes amid his own sexual harassment scandal.

Since October, when news broke of sexual assault allegations against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, women have been coming forward with stories of sexual harassment and abuse across industries, from entertainment to politics. In media, NBC “Today” show host Matt Lauer, one-time ABC journalist Mark Halperin and CBS and PBS host Charlie Rose ― to name a few ― were all recently fired after sexual misconduct allegations.

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