As details emerged about the possible reason and manner in which Tucker Carlson was separated from Fox News, podcaster and network alum Megyn Kelly added her own “supposition” on the “terrible move.”
(Video: The Megyn Kelly Show)
Some speculated that the now-former host of “Tucker Carlson Tonight” had taken his reporting too far about Big Pharma or Jan. 6, while others suggested the commentator may have had his sights set on the White House. The latest reports indicated he may not have even been fully apprised of the reason for his abrupt departure, but it was clear to many who stepped away on top.
“This is a terrible move by Fox, and it’s a great thing for Tucker Carlson,” Kelly opined on her SiriusXM program Monday.
“I don’t know what drove Fox News to make this decision, and it was clearly Fox News’ decision because they’re not letting him say goodbye. That’s my supposition,” she expressed. “That’s not inside knowledge.”
Later in the day, The Wall Street Journal, owned by Fox News’s parent company News Corp, reported that Fox Corp CEO Lachlan Murdoch had made the decision Friday night, but it was not conveyed to Carlson until Monday morning by Fox News CEO Suzanne Scott.
“Mr. Carlson, whose contract was renewed in 2021, will be paid out for the rest of his contract, people familiar with the matter said. Mr. Carlson is paid about $20 million a year, one of the people said. Mr. Carlson found out he was being let go about 10 minutes before the network announced his departure, the people said,” the Journal wrote.
While the former primetime host may not have been given a reason, the outlet went on to point toward Carlson’s private text messages that had been revealed as part of the Dominion Voting Systems defamation suit against Fox. Settled last week for nearly $800 million, a 192-page court filing in the suit from February had included texts between the commentator and his producer Alex Pfeiffer.
“We worked really hard to build what we have,” one message from Carlson on Nov. 5, 2020 said before taking aim at his higher-ups. “Those f***ers are destroying our credibility. It enrages me.”
Fox News hosts texts exposed in lawsuit show Tucker slamming Trump as 'a demonic force'https://t.co/c7CxlgWuke
— American Wire News (@americanwire_) February 17, 2023
Kelly had noted that the split would not have been because of the Dominion suit directly, not only because of Carlson’s factual coverage but because of who else would likely have been on the chopping block.
“They would want Jeanine Pirro’s scalp. They would want Suzanne Scott’s scalp,” she suggested, adding Maria Bartiromo into the mix.
Meanwhile, another suit against Carlson by former show booker Abby Grossberg remained alleging a hostile work environment and sexual harassment among other things.
Grossberg reacted to the news Monday with her own Twitter thread that read in part, “@TuckerCarlson and apparently Justin Wells’s departure from @FoxNews is a step towards accountability for the election lies and baseless conspiracy theories spread by the network, something I witnessed firsthand there as well as for the abuse and harassment I endured while Head of Booking & Senior Producer at ‘Tucker Carlson Tonight.'”
… as well as for the abuse and harassment I endured while Head of Booking & Senior Producer at “Tucker Carlson Tonight.”
— Abby Grossberg (@abby_grossberg) April 24, 2023
Kelly maintained that Carlson was the winner and added, “I’m not worried about Tucker at all.”
“I predict Tucker goes independent. Tucker launches a podcast or digital show and crushes it. Absolutely crushes it,” she continued.
As confirmation of her previous supposition that the decision came from Fox and not Carlson, Brian Kilmeade was the first filler of the 8 p.m. slot Monday for “Fox News Tonight” and breezed by the news with a brief statement.
“As you probably have heard, Fox News and Tucker Carlson have agreed to part ways,” Kilmeade said. “I wish Tucker the best. I am great friends with Tucker and always will be.”
Brian Kilmeade open Tucker Carlson's old timeslot with a perfunctory announcement about Tucker's departure from the network.
"I am great friends with Tucker and always will be." pic.twitter.com/DMwCXwgm0S
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) April 25, 2023
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