Fox News really blew it when they let Tucker Carlson go but even the network’s execs probably have yet to fully realize how damaging it was.
Originally published at WND News Center. Used with permission.
A new report from the Washington Post reveals that Carlson, formerly the standard bearer for Fox News before the network took him off the air, has considered running his own GOP candidate forum for the 2024 presidential election.
And that, likely, could end up being a “jab” at Fox, as the network wants to hold the first official primary debate.
Carlson, whose abrupt departure from Fox airtime left the network’s ratings collapsing to levels below even those of competitors who hadn’t realistically been in the race for years, hasn’t formally announced any plans for his future.
The report said, though, he now has aspirations “of moving into a larger role that doesn’t limit him to a single medium, according to people familiar with his thinking.”
“And he is willing to walk away from some of the millions that Fox is contractually obligated to pay him, if that would give him the flexibility to have a prominent voice in the 2024 election cycle,” the report said.
The Post added: ”Carlson and his team have discussed the possibility of moderating a candidate forum outside of the traditional protocols surrounding the GOP primary debate system, according to two people familiar with the considerations. These people said the setup — as well as Carlson’s availability to take on that kind of role, given the noncompete constraints of his contract with Fox — remain unclear. But Carlson has personally expressed enthusiasm about the idea, according to people familiar with his comments. At least one major candidate — Trump — has told Carlson he’s interested, according to a person familiar with the exchange.”
Observers have pointed out that leftists desperately wanted to take his voice off the air as the 2024 presidential race begins to assemble, and one way would be for Fox to take him off the air, but still cough up the millions called for in his contract, thereby limiting his other choices.
However, the report said a source said Carlson “might accept less money than he is owed to be able to get back into the media game…”
Joel Cheatwood, a former Fox News exec, told said in the report, “If I’m sitting in his seat right now, I’m plotting really my own media company, how I want to build it.
“Whether you like him or not, there are very few individual brands out there that you can almost guarantee an incredibly significant following from day one.”
Carlson already has been approached by a number of organizations, such as faith-based Trinity Broadcasting Network, One America News Network, Valuetainment, and Newsmax.
The report said, “Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy approached Carlson and his associates with a wide-ranging proposal that, in the words of one person familiar with the pitch, would involve ‘rebranding Newsmax under Tucker’s name.’ Carlson and his advisers are intrigued by the idea of his own media company, and taking over an existing one would be easier than building from the ground up — though any possible deal would boil down to unresolved questions of money and editorial control.”
Carlson’s only comments since his departure from Fox have been in Twitter, where tens of millions sought him out, dwarfing the remnant still watching Fox during his hour.