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Longtime Fox News host Laura Ingraham has not been fired from the network despite claims that circulated across social media.
Fox News released a statement on Wednesday night slamming “left-wing activists” who claimed on Twitter that the network planned to fire Ingraham, who has been a host on Fox for many years.
“Reports based on various tweets by left-wing activists are wildly inaccurate – Laura Ingraham, the top-rated woman in cable news, is now and will continue to be a prominent host and integral part of the Fox News lineup,” Fox News said in a statement, via Mediaite.
The rumors about Ingraham began on Wednesday afternoon after news aggregator Matt Drudge shared a scoop detailing how Fox News will make a big shake-up following Tucker Carlson’s departure from the network.
According to Drudge, the network will move longtime host Sean Hannity to take over the 8 p.m. time slot.
“WORLD EXCLUSIVE: FOXNEWS SETS NEW SCHEDULE” read the headline from Drudge, who noted Hannity’s new time slot as well as reports that both Jesse Watters and Greg Gutfeld would be heading to prime time.
“Watters currently hosts one of Fox’s top-rated shows at 7 p.m. while Gutfeld hosts a highly-rated late-night show at 11 p.m. — both co-host Fox’s top-rated program The Five at 5 p.m. Hannity, meanwhile, broke the record for longest-running cable news prime time host in April of 2022, eclipsing Larry King at 25 years, six months, and 15 days,” Mediaite reported.
“FOXNEWS is preparing to announce an ambitious new schedule, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned, a schedule where ever hour of primetime will change!” Drudge reported. “TOP SOURCE TELLS DRUDGE: ‘IT’S OUR BOLDEST AND MOST FEARLESS LINE-UP EVER’…”
A spokesperson for Fox News issues a statement to Mediaite regarding Drudge’s report by saying: “No decision has been made on a new primetime line-up and there are multiple scenarios under consideration.”
UPDATE: Fox has released a new statement:
“Reports based on various tweets by left wing activists are wildly inaccurate – Laura Ingraham, the top-rated woman in cable news, is now and will continue to be a prominent host and integral part of the Fox News lineup."
— MeidasTouch (@MeidasTouch) May 17, 2023
A new report appears to shed more light on why Fox News decided to take its biggest star off the air late last month.
According to a report by RadarOnline.com, Tucker Carlson was told by network brass he was being let go as part of Fox News’ massive $787.5 million defamation settlement with Dominion Voting Systems.
“In the latest development to come three weeks after Carlson was removed from his role at the network on April 24, it has been reported that one of Fox Corp.’s eight board members was the one to tell the fired host that his ‘recent benching’ was the result of the secret condition in the Dominion settlement,” the outlet reported.
The report continued: “According to Variety, the conversation between Carlson and the board member took place on April 26 – two days after the network announced Carlson’s involuntary departure from the company. The board member also reportedly told Carlson that the secret condition ensuring Carlson’s canning would not be found in any of the $787.5 million defamation settlement documents because it was a verbal agreement.”
If the network did not agree to those terms, then Dominion’s attorneys said the firm was prepared to call off the settlement and restart negotiations or take the case to trial, RadarOnline.com noted.
“That condition was intended to hurt Fox, and Tucker is just collateral damage,” a source familiar with the reported secret agreement told Variety. “Dominion wanted to punish Fox, and it’s working.”
But RadarOnline.com added that officials with the voting systems firm denied any secret arrangement had been made. “As the Fox principals who negotiated the settlement well know, Dominion made no demands about Tucker Carlson’s employment orally or in writing,” Dominion said in a statement to the outlet.
“Any claims otherwise are categorically false and a thinly veiled effort to further damage Dominion,” the firm noted further. “Fox should take every effort to stop these lies immediately.”