As Tucker Carlson is planning his next move following his shocking ouster from Fox News, the controversial news host is reportedly talking with Twitter CEO Elon Musk.
According to Axios, the pair has had a conversation about working together, though specifics were not discussed. Carlson is also reportedly mulling the creation of a direct-to-consumer media outlet where his fans could pay to watch him.
“Elon Musk has been pushing to get the Twitter audience and to get the Twitter platform more inclusive to his point of all different types of viewpoints, including conservative viewpoints, and so it wouldn’t shock me if the two of them were talking,” Axios reporter Sarah Fischer told “CNN This Morning” on Monday. “You’ll notice Donald Trump still has not returned to Twitter, and I don’t know the reason exactly for that other than that of course he still has Truth Social. But you can imagine that maybe Tucker is not the only person trying to think about what their Twitter strategy is and talking to Elon Musk makes sense.”
The reported discussion with Musk comes as Carlson is prepared to wage an all-out war to get out of his contract with the conservative network, which runs through January 2025.
“Tucker is one of the most prominent voices in the conservative party,” Fischer noted. “He’s who lawmakers depend on to do interviews and to carry out their message. And so whether or not he has a platform leading up to and during the 2024 election will have huge implications for all of the Republican campaigns.”
Axios noted that Carlson has been contacted by outlets, including the right-wing Rumble and Newsmax, offering to pay him more than his Fox contract. Fischer warns that while Fox is trying to keep Carlson in his contract to prevent him from going to a rival, he is prepared to disparage Fox and encourage his followers not to tune in.
“If Tucker were to go to a direct cable competitor, let’s say a Newsmax at the 8 p.m. slot, that would be detrimental to Fox. If Tucker were to go the Bill O’Reilly route or the Megyn Kelly route and start his own thing, it’s not as direct as a competitive audience, but Tucker could still disparage Fox, he could still say don’t watch them, sign up and subscribe to me, cut your cable bill, you don’t even need it anymore now that I’m no longer with Fox. So that’s sort of Fox’s biggest concern,” Fischer noted. “I imagine whatever agreement they come up with will include some sort of non-disparagement agreement, which means they let him out of his contract, but he has to agree not to push his viewers and fans against Fox News.”
Carlson’s sudden departure came as a shock to the cable news industry, as the network immediately shifted his 8 p.m. primetime slot with “Fox News Tonight,” which is described “as an interim show helmed by rotating Fox News personalities until a new host is named.” Representatives for Fox News referred TheWrap to the network’s statement announcing Carlson’s departure, which stated that Carlson and the network had “agreed to part ways.”
Carlson came under particular scrutiny in recent months as Dominion Voting Systems’ lawsuit against Fox News progressed. He was among the several network hosts who were questioned as part of the lawsuit’s proceedings, a list that also included Bartiromo, Jeanine Pirro, Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham and former host Lou Dobbs.
Additionally, Fox has issued a “cease and desist” letter over leaked videos of Carlson that show him engaging in offensive banter and “creepy comments” caught between tapings. They also have requested that Dominion Voting Systems investigate the leak of a now-infamous Tucker Carlson text message suggesting that a mob attack is “not how white men fight,” warning that they’re in danger of breaching their $787.5 million settlement agreement they forged just last month.
In a video posted to Twitter after his firing, Carlson said he would see his viewers again “soon.”