Fox News agreed to “part ways” with host Tucker Carlson on Monday morning, abruptly ending the network’s highest-rated single-host show.

The unexpected announcement comes in the wake of Fox News’ settlement last week with voting technology firm Dominion, which cost the network $787 million in a defamation suit related to false claims made about the 2020 presidential election. Fox faces further legal peril in a related case with Smartmatic, another election machine developer that hardened its position after the Dominion settlement. 

Carlson’s show was the top-rated news program in U.S. in 2021. Tucker Carlson Tonight was second only to another Fox show in 2022, The Five. Fox’s share price has fallen three percent since the announcement, costing the company around $600 million in market value. It will likely fall more throughout the day.

Fox News announced that Carlson’s primetime show will immediately be replaced Monday night with a new show, simply called Fox News Tonight. The new show will have “rotating Fox News personalities until a new host is named,” according to a statement.


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Carlson is facing a lawsuit from his former head of booking Abby Grossberg, who has accused the host for maintaining a “hostile and discriminatory” work environment. Several outlets have reported this case as a likely reason for Carlson’s termination.

Carlson has been known to make controversial claims on his show—and, given his value to Fox News as a major source of revenue, has been enabled to express opinions seen in few other places on mainstream media.

Far-right leaders such as Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Georgia) quickly took Carlson’s side, criticizing Fox for its decision.

Carlson also received support from several prominent figures on the far-left, such as journalist Glenn Greenwald and presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr., an environmental lawyer and staunch anti-vaccine activist. They view Carlson as one of the only hosts in mainstream media willing to call out the political “establishment” for its support of Ukraine and the push for COVID-19 vaccines.

On conservative commentator Charlie Kirk‘s show this morning, Donald Trump Jr. called Carlson a “thought leader” and claimed that Fox’s decision “changes things permanently.”

Carlson was one of the biggest targets in the Dominion suit, and many are speculating that his role in shaping Fox’s reaction to the 2020 election is the primary motivation for his removal.

“For a while, Fox News has been moving to become establishment media, and Tucker Carlson’s removal is a big milestone in that effort,” said Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy in a statement. “Millions of viewers who liked the old Fox News have made the switch to Newsmax, and Tucker’s departure will only fuel that trend.”

Newsmax is one of Fox’s primary rivals in the conservative media ecosystem and has become more prominent since the 2020 election by pushing former President Donald Trump‘s false claims that the 2020 election was fraudulent. Newsmax is also being sued by Dominion and Smartmatic.

In addition to Newsmax, Russia Today (RT) appeared to offer Carlson a position on Twitter Monday afternoon. RT is funded by the Russian government and has ceased operating in the United States since Russia’s full-scale invasion began last year.

Carlson has been accused of promoting Russian talking points in the ongoing war.

Carlson learned of his termination Monday morning upon arriving at work, with no heads-up. Carlson’s senior executive producer Justin Wells is also no longer employed at Fox News.

Another major shakeup in the media occurred just hours later, as CNN fired anchor Don Lemon with seemingly no prior warning as well. Lemon tweeted about the incident.

Carlson has not made a public statement about his apparent termination so far.

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