Wisconsin talk-radio host Charlie Sykes announced Monday that he will retire at the end of the year.
Sykes, an influential conservative and member of the Never Trump movement, said on his WTMJ radio program that it had been “an extraordinary privilege” to serve his community over the past two decades.
“This is not a decision that I made either lightly or recently and it was not driven by this year’s political season,” he said. “I made this decision more than a year ago for both professional and very personal reasons.”
Sykes added: “My father died when he was 63, and I will turn 62 this year, so this year has always been circled on my calendar. Frankly, if I was ever going to make a move, it was now. While I am stepping back from my daily radio duties, I intend to remain an active voice. I want to write more, travel more, and pursue new opportunities.”
The radio host elaborated further on his website, writing that “it would also be fair to say that this campaign has made the decision easier.”
Sykes made national headlines earlier this year when he told Business Insider that he believed the conservative media had created the conditions ripe for Trump, whom he referred to as a “monster.”
“When this is all over, we have to go back. There’s got to be a reckoning on all this,” Sykes said at the time.
“And look, I’m a conservative talk show host. All conservative hosts have basically established their brand as being contrasted to the mainstream media. So we have spent 20 years demonizing the liberal mainstream media. And by the way, a lot of it has been justifiable. There is real bias,” he continued.
“But at a certain point you wake up and you realize you have destroyed the credibility of any credible outlet out there,” Sykes said. “And I am feeling, to a certain extent, that we are reaping the whirlwind at that. And I have to look in the mirror and ask myself, ‘To what extent did I contribute?'”