Gawker is planning to go after a governor and the head of Fox News in court on Monday, The New York Times' Brian Stelter reports. Gawker, the company, and its reporter John Cook are filing a civil suit against Chris Christie's office in order to obtain any communications the New Jersey Governor might have had Roger Ailes, the head of Fox News. The origin of the case began in a New York profile of Ailes where it's reported that Ailes called Gov. Christie and tried to convince him to run for president in 2012. Cook made a request to Christie's office for the communication between the two after reading the profile, but he was denied.
Cook's takeaway from the denial of information from Christie's office was that it branded Ailes as a confidential advisor. The new lawsuit, regardless of outcome, will be a success for Cook. If he wins, he exposes the emails between the head of Fox News and a prominent GOP governor. If he loses, he establishes that the head of "fair and balanced" Fox News is also acting as a confidential advisor to a prominent GOP governor. He walks away unscathed, and with a great story, no matter what side of the coin comes up.
Though the suit is against Gov. Christie's office, the main target is Roger Ailes. Ailes' activity within GOP circles has been one of Cook's best beats at Gawker. Cook also reported of Ailes' meeting with another GOP member just before the 2010 mid-term elections. Since the beginning of 2011, he has reported six Gawker-branded exclusives on Ailes. Cook spoke to The Times' Stelter about the lawsuit and said of Fox News, “The next thing that I would like to be publicly acknowledged is not just that they’re ideological — they’re not just the TV equivalent of The Weekly Standard or something — they are actually a power base within the Republican Party.”