Learn Politics and History

The State of Cable News

Tucker Carlson and Don Lemon are two very different people. Tucker Carlson is a right wing political pundit who has promoted many conspiracy theories, most notably about the 2020 election, and the other, Don Lemon, is one of the lefts staunchest supporters, who backs Democrats at any turn. And yet, they both face a similar situation today: They both got fired. And in this article, I will tell you why either one got fired.

Tucker Carlson’s departure from Fox News was a mutual decision, that seemed to be out of the blue. After all, the network was still advertising Carlson’s interviews, and Carlson had made no indication that Friday would be his last show. However, we should have known that something was brewing. In the last week, many notable Fox hosts have been leaving the network, which I speculate is due to the almost 800 million dollar fine that Fox paid to dominion for spreading false information about the 2020 election. One of the biggest proponents of these lies was Tucker Carlson. Furthermore, Dominion had showed text messages that revealed that Tucker Carlson did not like Trump at all. This seems like the most probable reason that Carlson, one of the highest rated hosts on television, got cut.

Don Lemons situation is much more clear-cut and simple than Tucker Carlson’s. Lemon, who had been with CNN for 17 years, simply got fired due to low ratings. In a blog in late 2022, I discussed how CNN had canceled Lemon’s prime-time show and demoted him to morning, and explained how this was due to low ratings. After all, the morning show only garnered around 360,000 viewers each in March. Furthermore, Don Lemon had been in crossfire before this because of controversial statements he made talking about 2024 Republican Presidential candidate Nikkey Haley. 

While the reasons for both news giants departures might seem simple, they have much deeper implications. Firstly, for Carlson, who actually replaced embattled former Fox host Bill O’Reily, Fox has a big decision to make, in the replacement of Tucker Carlson. Will regular viewers of Carlson’s program get turned off after his departure? Many are saying Fox’s decision falls into two categories. Either hire a Carlson like pundit, or a more mainstream, center conservative to take the time slot. However, I believe the Fox News will instead ask a pundit who has already made a name for themselves in Fox, such as Sean Hannity, to fill in for another hour for a hefty pay raise. On the other hand, I believe Lemons firing from CNN will not have as big as an implication, and it will end up the same as the Chris Cuomo departure. Most likely CNN can find someone like Dana Bash or John King, two liberal pundits, to fill the time slots very easily.

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