Ben Shapiro denies Candace Owens was axed over Israel comments

GOSSIP & RUMORS: Ben Shapiro denies Candace Owens was axed over Israel comments

Ben Shapiro denied that Candace Owens parted ways with the right-leaning news and commentary site the Daily Wire because of “disagreements over Israel” — though he hinted that her comments veered outside of the company’s “Overton window.”

Shapiro, who co-founded the Daily Wire alongside Jeremy Boreing, cited “a lot of other factors … at play” that led to the departure of the conservative commentator last week.

Before her departure, Owens had been a vocal critic of Israel for launching military operations in Gaza following the Oct. 7 massacre by Hamas that killed at least 1,200 Israelis

Daily Wire co-founder Ben Shapiro addressed Candace Owens’ departure from the site. Getty Images

She has since resurfaced on Locals, a subscription-based video and newsletter platform.

“She’s free to do whatever she wants to do, to be wherever she wants to be,” Shapiro told podcaster Dave Rubin on Thursday when asked about Owens.

Shapiro said that while Locals is a “platform [which] should have a very broad range of speech that it allows,” the Daily Wire is a “publisher” that “would have no obligation” to pay someone whose views are not “inside what they would consider to be the Overton window.”

The Overton window, which was named after the late political scientist Joseph Overton, is considered a spectrum of political viewpoints that are deemed acceptable to mainstream society.

Owens parted ways with the Daily Wire last week after a string of controversial statements. Chris Dilts/Sipa USA

“The Daily Wire would not have a host, would not pay a host, who was staunchly pro-abortion,” Shapiro said, adding: “They would have no obligation to buy a host who is staunchly pro-abortion.”

Shapiro denied that the Daily Wire has a “free speech problem” — addressing criticism that the site got rid of Owens for her criticism of Israel while at the same time being critical of cancel culture.

He insisted that while “no one ever said” to Owens that she wasn’t permitted to criticize Israel, “the reality is that there is an Overton window at the Daily Wire.”

The Post has sought comment from Owens.

Owens, who amassed a following as a blogger and YouTube personality before joining the Daily Wire, has made several comments that the Anti-Defamation League said were tantamount to “vitriolic antisemitism.”

Owens has been critical of the Israeli government as well as “political Jews” in the US. Getty Images

She recently took aim at “political Jews” for fueling antisemitism while speculating that “secret Jewish gangs” are behind “horrific acts” against Hollywood figures.

Owens, 34, also said that a “ring of Jews in Hollywood” was involved in “something quite sinister.”

She also favorited an X post that invoked the ancient libel accusing Jews of drinking Christians’ blood.

After the Oct. 7 Hamas attacks against Israel, Owens criticized the Israeli military response in Gaza, writing on social media: “No government anywhere has a right to commit a genocide, ever. There is no justification for a genocide.”

Shapiro, an Orthodox Jew and a staunch defender of Israel, said Owens’ remarks about the topic were “absolutely disgraceful.”

In response, Owens wrote on X that “you cannot serve both God and money.”

In a post on X last week, celebrity Rabbi Shmuley Boteach accused Owens of being an “arch antisemite” who “is inciting her Jew-hating followers to threaten to murder Jews and especially me.”

In a recent radio interview, Owens said Shapiro “doesn’t have the power to fire me.”

The Post has sought comment from the Daily Wire.

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