The sudden announcement of Tucker Carlson’s departure from Fox News rocked the media world on Monday — but he’s far from the only prominent figure to make a very public exit from the network.
Carlson started as a contributor at Fox News in 2009, and moved into his role hosting the 8 p.m. hour in 2017. As the host of “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” he was one of the most-watched personalities on the cable news channel, known for pushing conservative and sometimes conspiratorial views.
Fox News said Carlson “agreed to part ways” with the network. But with his exit, Carlson now joins the ranks of several Fox News hosts and executives who have departed — or been forced out — under dramatic circumstances. Fox News did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Glenn Beck left his daily show on Fox News in 2011 after a little more than two years as a host. Beck’s show premiered the day after President Barack Obama’s inauguration, and — like Carlson’s — its run was marked by the host’s high ratings, controversial commentary and conspiracy theories. One of Beck’s more infamous moments was when he said that Obama had “a deep-seated hatred of white people.” Unlike Carlson, Beck’s departure was highly anticipated after the relationship between Beck’s company, Mercury Radio Arts, and Fox News grew increasingly tense leading up to the announcement.
Once the star of Fox News’ prime-time lineup, O’Reilly was forced out in 2017 after more than two decades with the network following allegations of sexual harassment that led advertisers to abandon his show. A New York Times report revealed that O’Reilly and Fox News had settled several sexual harassment claims, paying a combined $13 million to women who said O’Reilly had harassed them. Though O’Reilly denied the claims, Carlson took over his 8 p.m. slot after advertisers began boycotting the show.
Former Chairman and CEO of Fox News Channel Roger Ailes stepped aside in 2016 in the wake of a high-profile sexual harassment suit by a former Fox News anchor, Gretchen Carlson. Other female employees came forward following Carlson’s suit, leading Fox News to hire an outside law firm to investigate the claims. Ailes, who denied the allegations, stepped aside before that investigation was complete, leaving the network with a $40 million payout. Ailes founded the channel in 1996 with funding from Rupert Murdoch. He died in 2017 at the age of 77.
Ed Henry, once Fox News’ chief White House correspondent and later a co-anchor of the weekday news program “America’s Newsroom, was fired in 2020 after allegations of “willful sexual misconduct” leveled by another Fox News employee.
In 2017, Fox News host and contributor Eric Bolling departed the network “amicably,” while he was under investigation for sexual harassment. Bolling, who hosted a short-lived afternoon talk show, “The Specialists,” was suspended from the network following a report by The Huffington Post that he had in previous years sent unsolicited lewd photos to two co-workers. Bolling denied the allegations, and sued the reporter who broke the story for defamation.
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