Carlson, who previously hosted the hugely successful Tucker Carlson Tonight starting in 2016, was abruptly fired from Fox News on April 24 for reasons that have not yet been officially disclosed. Reporting since then has indicated that a racist text message from Carlson uncovered during Dominion Voting Systems’ $1.6 billion lawsuit against the network might have spurred executives to push him out. Others have also suggested that the move was due to a lawsuit from a former staffer who alleges that Carlson fostered a misogynistic workplace.
Carlson himself has stayed mostly quiet about the situation, save for one cryptic video that was light on concrete details. The lawyer whose services he retained following his departure from Fox, Bryan Freedman, spoke out on behalf of his client, offering a statement to Axios for a report about Carlson’s ambitious career plans and conflict over his Fox contract.
“The idea that anyone is going to silence Tucker and prevent him from speaking to his audience is beyond preposterous,” Freedman wrote to the outlet on Sunday.
Carlson reportedly plans to develop and launch “a media empire of his own” following his split with Fox News, according to Axios. The ex-host was offered significant deals from right-wing outlets like Rumble and Newsmax, the latter of which would have included the ability to dictate the direction of the entire channel, but Carlson appears to plotting his own path forward.
The primary obstacle in the way of that plan is reportedly Carlson’s Fox News contract, which remains in effect until January 2025, just after the next presidential election, despite his departure from the company. Axios’s report indicates that Fox is prepared to continue paying the former contributor $20 million a year to keep him sidelined until then, and that Carlson is supposedly gathering allies in the conservative realm to help push for him to be released from his contract. Meanwhile, the network’s 8 p.m. ET programming hour has seen a significant decline since Carlson’s exit, at one point dipping low enough to be surpassed by MSNBC‘s All In with Chris Hayes.
All prior attempts by Newsweek to reach Fox News Media for comment about developments and rumors regarding Carlson’s situation have been directed to the company’s initial press release about the departure. The release said that the company and the host mutually “agreed to part ways” and thanked him “for his service to the network.”
Newsweek reached out to Freedman via email for comment.
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