Former President Donald Trump said Monday he was “shocked” by Fox News’ announcement that the network has parted ways with opinion host Tucker Carlson.
“Well, I’m shocked, I’m surprised,” Trump said during an appearance on Newsmax’s Greg Kelly Reports.
“He’s a very good person and a very good man and very talented and as you know he had very high ratings, so we’re just learning about it, almost as we speak.”
Trump’s appearance followed the shocking announcement earlier in the day that Fox News had dismissed Tucker Carlson, the network’s highest-rated opinion host who is considered a right-wing media goliath.
The interview was held at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home in Florida.
“I just said ‘Well, that was something, that’s a big one,’” Trump said of learning the news about Carlson.
“I don’t know if it was voluntary, or was it somebody fired, but I think Tucker has been terrific. He’s been, especially after the last year or so, he’s been terrific to me.”
Carlson’s dismissal followed the conservative network’s agreement to pay $787.5 million to Dominion Voting Systems to settle a lawsuit over false claims about the 2020 election.
“I was surprised that they made a settlement in that case,” Trump said.
“I thought that was a case that should easily have been won. And they made a settlement. You’ll have to ask them, I’m not representing them at all, by any means. But the Tucker situation again, we don’t know if it’s a firing or maybe he left because he wasn’t being given enough free reign. He wants free reign maybe.”
His influence in conservative media can’t be overstated, ,” media journalist Brian Stelter said Monday during an appearance on PBS NewsHour.
“Until today, Tucker Carlson was basically controlling the Republican party,” Stelter said.
“Whatever he wanted, he got. Kevin McCarthy gave him the surveillance tapes from Jan. 6, when he would survey all the prospective nominees (for 2024) they all responded to his survey. But not anymore. He’s disappeared.”
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