Tucker Carlson, the highest-rated cable news host in history, was abruptly taken off the air in late April. Now, new information reveals who made the final decision to cut ties with Carlson.
A new report reveals that Lachlan Murdoch, the chief executive of Fox Corporation, and Suzanne Scott, chief executive of Fox News Media, decided to fire Carlson.
“The power that Mr. Carlson, 53, wielded outside Fox News could not insulate him from a growing list of troubles inside the network related to his conduct on and off the air, some of which had been grating on Mr. Murdoch and his father, Rupert Murdoch, the chairman of Fox Corporation, who co-founded the network in 1996, according to the two people with knowledge of the company’s decision,” it was reported.
“The host, a polarizing and unpopular figure at the network outside of his staff, was exposed as part of a defamation lawsuit by Dominion Voting Systems as a bully who denigrated colleagues and sources, often in profane and sexist language, and called for the firing of Fox journalists whose coverage he disliked. He has also drawn condemnation from the right and left for his role in fostering a revisionist account of the assault on the United States Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021,” the outlet added.
Fox News announced its brand new prime-time lineup on Monday and revealed who will be taking over Tucker Carlson’s old time slot.
In a press release, the network revealed that Jesse Watters will take the 8 p.m. slot, directly replacing Carlson. Laura Ingraham will move from 10 p.m. to 7 p.m., Sean Hannity will stay at 9 p.m. and Greg Gutfeld will move to 10 p.m. Longtime news anchor Trace Gallagher will move up to 11p.m.
“A rotating cast of hosts stepped in to replace Carlson after he was abruptly fired from Fox News one week after it reached a $787.5 million settlement with Dominion Voting Systems over the airing of 2020 election lies. The ratings dipped significantly from the Carlson era, who in his seven years helming Tucker Carlson Tonight emerged as a controversial but popular host at the network,” Mediaite reported
“Watters joined Fox News two decades ago, working his way up from production assistant to on-air commentator on Bill O’Reilly’s hit prime-time show. In recent years, he has become one of the most-watched personalities on the network, as co-host of the top-rated show The Five and solo host of his own program Watters’ World, which debuted in the 7 p.m. slot in 2022,” the outlet added. “Perhaps the biggest shake-up is moving the top-rated late-night show Gutfeld! from 11 PM to an hour earlier.”
Fox News cable news ratings have collapsed in the key 25-54 age demographic after the network took Carlson off the air in late April.
Things have gotten so bad at the network that Hannity has fallen behind MSNBC’s Joy Reid in the key demo.
Hannity’s primetime show has been feeling the heat since Carlson was abruptly ousted.
Hannity’s show, which got up to nearly 2 million in the final weeks of May, has fallen to around a 1.7 million average in June so far. For comparison, Hannity’s primetime show averaged around 3 million each night before Carlson’s departure.
Since being taken off the air, Carlson has begun posting short monologues to Twitter, which Fox says is a violation of his contract.
The network has sent him a cease-and-desist letter, though so far, he has refused to do so, arguing that Fox violates their contract with him.