Fox News and Tucker Carlson Part Ways Following Defamation Lawsuit
Written by A.M. Ray aka Jamm on April 24, 2023
Fox News announced on Monday that it had severed ties with Tucker Carlson, the right-wing extremist who hosted the network’s highly rated 8pm hour. The announcement came just one week after Fox News settled a defamation lawsuit with Dominion Voting Systems for $787.5 million over the network’s dissemination of election lies.
Tucker Carlson was a top promoter of conspiracy theories and radical rhetoric at the network. Not only did he repeatedly sow doubt about the legitimacy of the 2020 election, but he also promoted conspiracy theories about the Covid-19 vaccines and elevated white nationalist talking points.
Jonathan Greenblatt, the head of the Anti-Defamation League, praised Fox News’ decision, saying it is “about time” and that “for far too long, Tucker Carlson has used his primetime show to spew antisemitic, racist, xenophobic and anti-LGBTQ hate to millions.”
Tucker Carlson was a key figure in Dominion Voting Systems’ mammoth defamation lawsuit against Fox News, which the parties settled last week on the brink of trial for a historic $787 million. In some ways, Carlson played an outsized role in the litigation: Only one of the 20 allegedly defamatory Fox broadcasts mentioned in the lawsuit came from Carlson’s top-rated show. But, as CNN exclusively reported, he was set to be one of Dominion’s first witnesses to testify at trial. And his private text messages, which became public as part of the suit, reverberated nationwide.
The lawsuit exposed how Carlson privately held a wholly different view than his on-air persona. A Dominion spokesperson did not comment on Carlson’s departure from Fox. But it’s unclear if Carlson’s departure is directly connected to the Dominion case or other lawsuits related to Fox’s election denialism. The statement that Fox issued Monday didn’t offer any explanation for Carlson’s departure.
Abby Grossberg, the ex-Fox News producer who has since disavowed the network, claimed in recent lawsuits that there was rampant sexism and misogyny among Tucker Carlson’s show team. Last month, she sued Fox News, Carlson, his executive producer Justin Wells and other figures, as well as Fox’s parent corporation.
Grossberg, who joined Carlson’s team after the 2020 election, said in her lawsuit that after her first day on the job that “it became apparent how pervasive the misogyny and drive to embarrass and objectify women was among the male staff at TCT,” referring to “Tucker Carlson Tonight.”
The lawsuits also claim that Grossberg alerted Wells to some of the “inappropriate and harassing conduct” that she endured while working at the show, but he “brushed aside” her concerns, according to court filings.
Fox News is aggressively fighting two lawsuits from Grossberg. A Fox spokesperson previously said the lawsuits were “riddled with false allegations against the network and our employees.”
In a lawsuit filed last month, Grossberg said Carlson “was very capable of using such disgusting language about women in the workplace.” She cited some of Carlson’s private texts, where he used the phrase “c-nt” to describe a female colleague.
The departure of Carlson from Fox News comes as a major shock to the network’s viewers, who have grown accustomed to his far-right views and inflammatory rhetoric. It remains to be seen how the network will fill the void left by Carlson, or how his departure will impact Fox News’ ratings and reputation.