An FBI search earlier this month at the home of media consultant Tim Burke and his wife, Tampa City Council member Lynn Hurtak, stemmed from an investigation of alleged computer intrusions and intercepted communications at the Fox News Network, the Tampa Bay Times has learned. The Times obtained a letter Thursday that a Tampa federal prosecutor sent to Fox News, which describes an ongoing criminal probe into computer hacks at the company, including unaired video from Tucker Carlson’s show. The former primetime host was dropped by the network in April.
Former President Trump is set to join Sean Hannity for a town hall event on Fox News next month, the network announced on Thursday. The event is set to be taped in Iowa on June 1 and air at 9 p.m. ET the same day, according to a release. Hannity will reportedly take questions from the audience.
What Happens Next For Tegna?
Fox News said that it is considering changes to its primetime lineup following the exit of Tucker Carlson, but it suggested that a report that Sean Hannity would fill the slot was premature. “No decision has been made on a new primetime line-up and there are multiple scenarios under consideration,” a network spokesperson said. The statement came after Drudge Report blared out a main headline that Hannity was being prepared to take over the time slot, with Jesse Watters and Greg Gutfeld also being prepared for primetime slots. Where that leaves Laura Ingraham’s show, which airs at 10 p.m., is unclear.
The mystery surrounding Tucker Carlson’s ouster from the airwaves at Fox News — and his future plans in media — are coming into sharper focus. On April 26, Carlson spoke by phone with one of Fox Corp.’s eight board members, who told the host that his recent benching was a condition of Fox News’ settlement with Dominion Voting Systems, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the conversation. The unnamed board member told Carlson that the condition does not appear in any of the settlement’s documents, and instead was a verbal agreement. If Fox didn’t comply, the settlement was off, Carlson was told. Dominion had plenty of leverage given that the $787.5 million deal to settle Dominion’s defamation suit against the network wouldn’t officially close until late May.
The suit, brought by a specialist in Russian disinformation, cites parallels with the recently settled Dominion Voting Systems case against Fox.
The lawsuit, brought by Abby Grossberg, accused the cable network of pressuring her to lie in a deposition. Her lawyers say they intend to refile the case in a different jurisdiction.
Lachlan Murdoch: After Huge Dominion Settlement, Fox News Faces ‘Fundamentally Different’ Legal Challenge With Smartmatic
Tucker Carlson is out at 8 p.m. on Fox News Channel, and the network hopes that a host of blue-chip advertisers that for years avoided his controversial hour will soon come back in. Since Carlson’s stunning exit last month, a timeslot that has been shunned by many Madison Avenue stalwarts seems as if it is being embraced. Procter & Gamble, one of the nation’s largest and most influential advertisers, has been running ads in Fox News Tonight, the network’s new 8 p.m. program, for female-skewing products like Venus razor blades by Gillette and Secret underarm deodorant. Also showing up in commercial breaks: Novo Nordisk’s trendy medication Ozempic, and Scotts Miracle-Gro.
Tucker Carlson is preparing to unleash allies to attack Fox News in an effort to bully the network into letting him work for — or start — a right-wing rival, sources close to him tell Axios. Tucker vs. Fox could reshape the conservative news world. Fox, which has seen its ratings plunge in Carlson’s slot since he was let go 13 days ago, wants to sideline him by paying him $20 million a year not to work.
Fox Sends Cease-And-Desist Letter To Media Matters Over Leaked Tucker Carlson Videos; Media Watchdog Responds
Fox News parent Fox Corp. has sent a cease-and-desist order to Media Matters for America in an effort to stop leaked footage of Tucker Carlson, which shows the fired Fox News host making offensive and crude remarks. Media Matters The company claims the “proprietary material” was given to the media watchdog “without Fox’s authorization.”
When former President Trump attends a CNN town hall event in New Hampshire next week, it will be his first time sitting down with a major network other than Fox News since he dramatically stormed off the set of a 60 Minutes interview in late October 2020. Trump’s first CNN appearance in years comes as the former president and his team are hoping to rebuild his relationships with mainstream outlets after demonizing them for years. While Trump still has a complicated relationship with Fox News, one of the biggest brands in television, the agreement to do a town hall event with CNN is a significant moment that offers potential rewards to both parties.
When Fox News anchor Brian Kilmeade signed on Monday night to fill in for the defunct Tucker Carlson Tonight, some combination of curiosity, lead-in and brand strength kept the network’s total viewers numbers in a dead heat with Carlson’s last show the Friday before. But boy, what a difference a couple of days makes: While the 8 p.m. hour got 2.59 million total viewers on average on Monday, viewership dropped to 1.7 million viewers on Tuesday, and slid further to 1.33 million total viewers on Wednesday, falling just behind MSNBC in that time-slot, according to Nielsen live plus same-day figures.
The former Fox News host posted a video on Twitter Wednesday shortly after 8 p.m. ET, the time his Fox show used to begin, that talked about a lack of honest political debate in the media. Carlson said one of the things he noticed, “when you step away from the noise for a few days,” is how nice some people are, and how hilarious some are. Fox fired its most popular personality on Monday without explanation, less than a week after settling a lawsuit concerning the spread of lies about the 2020 presidential election.
Fox News has agreed to give voting technology company Smartmatic additional documents about Fox Corp. Chairman Rupert Murdoch and other senior corporate executives. Smartmatic is suing the network for $2.7 billion over its airing of 2020 election lies. The agreement was announced Wednesday at a court hearing in Manhattan. New York Supreme Court Judge David Cohen scheduled the hearing after Smartmatic raised concerns about whether Fox was complying with its pretrial obligations to turn over relevant evidence.
Tucker Carlson has long been an inescapable presence in culture — the conservative news host’s show Tucker Carlson Tonight was a frequent chart-topper among the cable news group and clips from his Fox News broadcasts often trended on social media. But for advertisers, Carlson’s reach wasn’t necessarily a desirable one, and his surprise departure from the Fox News fold may be a positive sign for the network.
Why Tucker Carlson Was A Problem For Fox News
The primetime host called one senior executive the c-word in a redacted missive; the network grew wary of further embarrassment from possible disclosure.
Though it still handily led the 8 p.m. hour, the cable outlet’s viewers fell off by a sizable amount Monday when Carlson replacement, Fox News Tonight, was hosted by Brian Kilmeade, the first in a series of rotating hosts.
No one is irreplaceable at the network. It was designed that way.
The two hosts took very different approaches, but the decisions by Fox News and CNN to shed the stars marks at least a temporary shift in the excesses of Trump-era coverage.
The $787.5 million settlement between Fox News and Dominion Voting Systems revealed plenty of what Fox personalities had been saying about the bogus election claims, including Tucker Carlson, the network’s top-rated host who was let go Monday. His unexplained departure on Monday has turned a spotlight on what he said in depositions, emails and text messages among the thousands of pages Dominion released in the leadup to jury selection in the case.