A Fox News spokesperson explained Monday that conspiracy theorist Glenn Beck left the network not because he was safeguarding his spirituality, but because "he was trying to save his ass" after a massively effective advertiser boycott.

The comment comes by way of Politico's Mike Allen, who emailed Fox News for a reaction to Beck's remarks on Friday, when he told a group of students that he left Fox News to save his immortal soul.

“Glenn Beck wasn't trying to save his soul, he was trying to save his ass," a Fox News spokesperson told Allen in an email. "Advertisers fled his show and even Glenn knows what that means in our industry. Yet, we still tried to give him a soft landing. Guess no good deed goes unpunished."

For the record, that's the first official acknowledgment that Fox News really felt the advertiser boycott launched in part by the activist group Color of Change.

For months on end, activists pelted Beck's advertisers with tens of thousands of letters, emails and phone calls complaining about the host's racist rhetoric that hundreds of companies backed away. Beck saw so many advertisers flee from his program during that period, his show actually ran without any ads at all in the U.K. for a time.

The conspiracy host's departure was announced in April 2011. He's since launched a video-based website called "The Blaze TV" and a companion blog. Beck was reportedly in talks with Current TV to buy the network out for $500 million and put "The Blaze TV" on cable, but network owner Al Gore, the former vice president of the United States, turned him down and sold to Qatar-based Al Jazeera for less.


Photo: Flickr user david_shankbone.