Tucker Carlson likely fired for 'highly offensive and crude remarks' discovered on eve of trial: NYT
Fox News on the eve of the Dominion Voting Systems' defamation case found a trove of offensive text messages sent by Tucker Carlson that were previously redacted, and the revelation was an “important factor” in the right-wing cable host’s ouster, The New York Times reports.
Carlson made comments private messages that were "highly offensive and crude remarks that went beyond the inflammatory, often racist comments of his prime-time show and anything disclosed in the lead-up to the trial," The Times reports.
The messages were in Fox’s trial lawyers' possession for months but weren't known to the company's board and senior executives until much later for reasons that are not yet known, but the discovery plunged the company's executive leadership into chaos.
The board was concerned that Carlson's behavior would cause harm beyond the Dominion case and considered hiring an outside law firm to investigate him, two sources told The Times.
The Times reports that the discovery of the messages put "added pressure on the Fox leadership as it sought to find a way to avoid a trial where Mr. Carlson — not to mention so many others at the network — would be questioned about the contents of the private messages they exchanged in the aftermath of the 2020 presidential election."
Fox News two days later agreed to a $787.5 million settlement with Dominion.
The Times reports that Fox News "executives have indicated that a variety of factors fed into the decision to fire Mr. Carlson after Fox stood by him for years as he drew protest and advertiser boycotts for trafficking in conspiracy theories and narratives of white grievance. But they acknowledge that the discovery of what was in the redacted text messages was an important factor in his ultimate dismissal."
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