On Monday, Fox News Media announced it canceled Tucker Carlson in a move that stunned many. Chaos ensued after the media company abruptly dismissed its most popular prime-time host. As a result, Fox’s shares dropped by 5% after the news broke and closed 3% lower.
Moreover, the Fox News press release indicated Carlson’s final TV broadcast aired Friday, April 21, 2023. “Fox News Tonight” will air live at 8 p.m. ET beginning April 24 as a temporary program hosted by rotating Fox News personalities until a new commentator is named.
Since the 53-year-old host told viewers he would see them on Monday when he signed off from his talk show, “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” on Friday, today’s announcement surprised the contentious Republican political commentator. Several newspapers noted the host’s colleagues also expressed astonishment.
However, NPR reports: “Suzanne Scott and Lachlan Murdoch, Fox News chief executives, and its parent company Fox Corp. respectively, had decided Carlson’s fate on Friday, according to a source with knowledge.”
Carlson’s dismissal comes six days after Fox and Dominion Voting Systems settled a defamation case. The media company paid $787.5 million.
Dominion filed the case against Fox over coverage of debunked election-rigging claims. Despite believing otherwise, the network’s most popular and highest-ranked host pushed former President Donald Trump’s Big Lie that the 2020 election was stolen.
CBS News reported that Fox’s top-rated host drew “334,000 viewers in the coveted 25-to-54-year-old demographic in the 8 p.m. slot for the week ending April 20.” Carson’s audience was over twice that of his competitors at CNN and MSNBC during the same time slot. Moreover, he also attracted a larger audience than other popular Fox hosts such as Laura Ingraham or Sean Hannity.
Written by Cathy Milne-Ware
NPR: Tucker Carlson ousted at Fox News following network’s $787 million settlement; by David Folkenflik
CBS News: Fox shares drop after announcing Tucker Carlson, a top ratings draw, is leaving; by Aimee Picchi
The New York Times: Tucker Carlson, a source of repeated controversies, is out at Fox News. By Jeremy W. Peters and Katie Robertson