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Megyn Kelly remains a juggernaut, despite Trump

This has been a big year for Megyn Kelly. Despite being FOX's biggest rising star for a number of years, this was the year that Kelly became a true mainstream figure, even outside of the FOX News wheelhouse. For some, the tipping point arrived in 2013, when a classic Kelly rebuttal of a tired conservative stereotype about women's roles drew attention. For others it was last year, when Kelly was interviewed by Facebook's COO as a representative of powerful women everywhere. But for many people in America, it was the now infamous exchange between Donald Trump and Megyn Kelly that brought her into the broad public eye.
What transpired is now part of the public record, and generally known by anyone who cares. We won't dredge up poor behavior to make a point that has already been made. In hindsight, it looks like Donald Trump thought he could win against Megyn Kelly in the war or words, with very little effort spent. After all, this is a skill he has displayed with remarkable effectiveness, against everyone from business partners to campaign opponents (a couple of whom he may have single handedly derailed). But it was different with Kelly. Megyn Kelly didn't even have to resort to the level of name-calling and boorishness that the Donald did, but his numbers took a drop in the polls, and her name was more well-known than ever. Why did the Kelly brand survive where others have fallen prey to Trump's attacks?

It's because Kelly has been building a strong foundation for many years. Trump likely didn't know this, or at least the extent of it, when he said the things that he did. Years ago, Kelly left a high-powered job at a corporate law firm to pursue television news. Ten years ago, FOX News was a boy's club. Women spoke and even had a show or two, but nothing compared to the ratings of people like Bill O'Reilly and the other familiar FOX talking heads.

Kelly entered FOX's stable about this time. Overlooked by the folks at CNN (to their expressed regret today), Kelly gained a lot of power in the years that went on, until sitting atop the network's ratings today. Her brand has spread beyond the FOX omnisphere, giving her unprecedented admiration in different political circles, at least for a journalist with a show on FOX. Some have compared her brand to that of Oprah, but one achieved in a different subset of the American cultural landscape. The similarities are noteworthy, a female personality achieving heretofore unremembered political clout through television media, with widespread influence, and an ever expanding brand and influence.

But unlike Winfrey, Kelly is doing it at the center of the political/cultural conversation. Not simply providing daytime entertainment for light viewing, Kelly isn't afraid to polarize. Ironically, it seems to be this trait that has earned her fans across the aisle. Little did Donald Trump know that his careless comments would do nothing more than inflame a huge and dedicated supporter base. Come to think of it, maybe it should be Megyn Kelly who's leading the Republican polls right now, not Trump.

14 Dec 2015 10:31


About Boris Dzhingarov

Boris Dzhingarov graduated UNWE with a major in marketing. He is the CEO of ESBO ltd brand mentioning agency. He writes for several online sites such as,,, Boris is the founder of and