Leaving Fox News isn’t the end of the world. Just ask someone who did it.
In her SiriusXM show Monday, former Fox employee Megyn Kelly said Tucker Carlson’s unexpected dismissal from the network was “a great thing” for the popular former host and an example of Fox News “misjudging [its] audience yet again.”
The news that Carlson was out sent shockwaves through the media world after it broke Monday morning.
“FOX News Media and Tucker Carlson have agreed to part ways. We thank him for his service to the network as a host and prior to that as a contributor,” an emailed statement from Fox News to The Western Journal read.
“Mr. Carlson’s last program was Friday April 21st. Fox News Tonight will air live at 8 PM/ET starting this evening as an interim show helmed by rotating FOX News personalities until a new host is named.”
Monday night’s host was Brian Kilmeade.
Carlson apparently had no idea this was coming, and there was no indication this was a mutual decision. His final words on Friday’s show, in fact, included him saying, “We’ll be back on Monday.”
“In the meantime, have the best weekend with the ones that you love, and we’ll see you then,” he concluded:
Here was the end of what turned out to be Tucker Carlson’s final Fox News show last Friday. Certainly no indication that he didn’t expect to be on the air tonight. In fact Tucker’s final words are, “we’ll be back on Monday.” pic.twitter.com/F9R5MpWHDK
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) April 24, 2023
Not even a goodbye — which, as Kelly pointed out, at least she was permitted to give her viewers when she left the network, albeit under different circumstances.
Carlson, who’s been with the network since 2009 and began hosting “Tucker Carlson Tonight” in 2016, became a lightning rod in Fox News’ lawsuit against Dominion Voting Systems — something Kelly said on her Monday show was “the irony here.”
“How did they get in trouble with Dominion?” Kelly said. “They called Arizona too soon” for Joe Biden on election night in 2020.
“They were under pressure by their audience to reverse the call. The audience started to leave them in droves because they felt betrayed … and they went into a panic as their audience started to flee.”
Then, Kelly said, the network “over-corrected by covering the bulls*** claims about Dominion as though they were plausible and gave way too much credence to some of those claims on the air.”
Fox News settled with Dominion for well over $700 million last week. While Carlson’s testimony and texts were widely covered in the media as evidence of the network’s guilt in the libel case — which they didn’t admit in the settlement — less-frequently mentioned was the fact that Carlson was one of the strongest voices on the network in the weeks following the election denouncing any theories that vote-counting software played any role in election fraud.
In particular, as Kelly noted, he “was one of the few who went on the air and said Sidney Powell is a liar — she’s a liar, and I’ve seen the proof, and don’t believe her.”
An update on our reporting on Sidney Powell’s voter fraud investigation. Watch. pic.twitter.com/ho6Dkv0IXf
— Tucker Carlson (@TuckerCarlson) November 21, 2020
“He was not the reason for that $800 million settlement,” Kelly said. “So, what do they do in the wake of that settlement? They get rid of Tucker.
“Talk about misjudging your audience, yet again,” she said, adding that she hears from her former Fox News audience all the time and, for many of them, “Tucker’s the only reason a lot of people still watch Fox News.”
While Kelly left Fox News of her own accord — she said during Monday’s show it was because she didn’t want to do prime-time TV anymore, although her contentious relationship with then-President Donald Trump might have made it harder for her to remain at the network — she still felt “it’s a great thing for Tucker” and a bad day for Fox.
Breaking: Fox News is dead
— Stevie Stacks 🇺🇸🇮🇱🐋 (@StevieStacks84) April 24, 2023
“Internally at Fox, they always had that gauge, at least under Roger Ailes, of how to ignore those critics and do what was right for the channel and its audience and the truth,” she said. “And they lost that in the context of Dominion … but that was not due to anything Tucker did.”
So, where to from here for Carlson? Well, the 2024 election season is young, as many pointed out on Twitter:
Ok hear me out
Trump/Carlson 2024 pic.twitter.com/r4qRU1RTOk
— DC_Draino (@DC_Draino) April 24, 2023
Or, he could just as easily springboard onto a more independent platform — something conservatives have talked about for years given Fox News’ tendency to embrace counter-establishment right-wing politics only at arm’s length, then to distance themselves completely when top brass begin to sweat.
One thing’s for sure: Kelly managed to land on her feet, and so will Carlson. As for Fox News, they find themselves in a similar pickle to 2020 — when, after calling Arizona early for Joe Biden, yes, they did over-correct. And no, Carlson wasn’t a major part of that, but as the most watched prime-time face on the network and a magnet for liberals who accuse him of all sorts of perfidy, he’s the perfect scapegoat.
If top network brass think this will get the heat off them, however, they have another thing coming.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
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