The remaining staffers who worked on Carlson’s show before his shocking April ouster were informed that their positions are being eliminated
The development arrives as Fox News, on Monday, announced its new primetime lineup that will place Jesse Watters in Carlson’s old spot
While Carlson remains locked in a legal battle with Fox News, the staffers were told they will have the opportunity to apply for other roles at the network
By SOPHIE MANN FOR DAILYMAIL.COM
The eight remaining staffers who formerly worked on Fox’s Tucker Carlson Tonight have been told that their positions are being eliminated after the network officially announced its new primetime lineup on Monday.
At least one Carlson employee did not take that news lying down. Gregg Re – the show’s former head writer – unleashed a series of ‘scorched earth’ tweets Monday evening that targeted Fox’s Executive Vice President of Primetime Programming Meade Cooper.
According to a source familiar with the situation, the staffers, who have been working on Fox News Tonight – the placeholder show that’s been airing as the network decided what would replace Carlson’s show – were individually told that their jobs will no longer exist come mid-July.
The eight were offered ‘enhanced severance’ if they decide to stay on through July 14, which is the last day of Fox’s current primetime lineup before the new schedule takes effect.
The staffers were also offered the opportunity to apply for other roles at the network.
The remainder of Tucker Carlson’s staffers were told their positions were being eliminated Monday after the network announced its new primetime lineup
44-year-old Jesse Watters was announced as the new face of Fox News’ coveted 8pm slot, a spot he had been the frontrunner to assume for weeks
Earlier in June, two former Carlson staffers, Alexander McCaskill and Thomas Fox – both senior leadership for the show – departed the network. Both men were mentioned by name in the discrimination suit filed against the network by former producer Abby Grossberg.
Former head writer Re specifically aimed his harsh commentary at Fox’s Executive Vice President of Primetime Programming Meade Cooper.
‘Meade Cooper did not simply fire all of Tucker’s old team. It’s important to capture the callousness. First, she let the employees hear about the news of their show’s cancellation from a Fox press release. Then, Meade told the employees to hunt around the Fox website to see if they could maybe find another gig,’ he wrote.
He continued: ‘Tune into “Fox News tonight” for its last two weeks on air. Enjoy watching the work product of nine producers, whom Meade Cooper is forcing to work before she fires them. (Under threat of losing their severance). I’m sure it’ll be great content.’
Supporting Re’s comments, Chadwick Moore, an author who wrote a book about Carlson due out later this summer, wrote: ‘Meade Cooper, the exec who fired all of Tucker’s former team yesterday, is a “terrible leader” with no regard for the people who perform day in and day out, Fox staffers tell me.
‘She “lacks creativity” and “pretended to have oversight of Fox Primetime programming for years,” they said. Cooper “benefited from the ascension of women at the network after Roger Ailes departed,’ he wrote.
‘She has now executed the highest performing producers in cable news history. While riding a women’s advocacy wave, many of those she fired yesterday were women, sources tell me.’
Re excoriated Fox News executive Meade Cooper after she fired the remaining eight staffers who used to work on Carlson’s show on Monday. McCaskill, who used to work on Carlson’s show, departed the network earlier this month after he ran a chyron that called Joe Biden a ‘dictator’
Meade Cooper, the Fox executive who allegedly made the decision to fire the rest of Carlson’s staff
Carlson’s shocking ouster came in late April after the company settled a massive $787.5million lawsuit with Dominion Voting Systems. Even then, the move puzzled many who thought Fox would never have backed down from a fight when it came to their lucrative golden boy – who technically is still under contract.
Earlier this month, the network touted this arrangement after top brass threatened to sue Carlson for violating his contract by way of the launch of a low-budget Twitter show that was watched by more than 80million people.
In a report from Axios, lawyers for the media giant are said to have sent official correspondence to Carlson’s legal team claiming the newscaster was ‘in breach’ of his contract when he aired his new Twitter show.
Carlson’s lawyers reportedly argued any legal action by Fox would be a direct violation of their client’s First Amendment rights, as the pundit is said to be looking for a way out of a $20million-a-year contract with the company.
Carlson left his Fox News show on April 23, with no official reason given for why the company let their most-watched anchor go. The aforementioned contract has prevented him from taking work at competing networks.
In the statement to Axios, Carlson’s lawyer, Bryan Freedman, accused Fox executives of engaging in hypocrisy by silencing Carlson, pointing to how the company claims to ‘defend its very existence on freedom of speech grounds.’
On Monday, Fox announced that Jesse Watters will take over the 8pm prime time slot after Carlson was yanked from the air by the network this spring.
Announced as part of a shuffle that will also see Laura Ingraham shift earlier in the evening and late-night host Greg Gutfeld move up to 10pm, Watters will now man the hallowed 8pm slot – left vacant by Carlson back in April.
The brand-new lineup will also see Ingraham, previously the host of the 10pm hour, kick off the primetime programming block at 7pm. Seasoned commentator Sean Hannity, meanwhile, will keep his old 9pm time, top brass confirmed in a statement.
It comes almost two months to the day that Carlson was abruptly axed from his longtime post at Fox, days after it paid $787.5million to settle a defamation suit linked to remarks made on air by the commentator.
In the time since, rumors swirled as to a possible replacement – with a frontrunner eventually surfacing in 44-year-old Watters, whose rise can be traced back to his days as a production assistant on the O’Reilly Factor when he was just 24, when he gained notoriety as a dogged man-on-the street correspondent.
Suzanne Scott, the network’s CEO, announced Watters would be replacing Carlson in a statement early Monday morning.
‘Fox News Channel has been America’s destination for news and analysis for more than 21 years and we are thrilled to debut a new lineup,’ Scott, the network’s top exec since 2018, wrote in the bombshell notice.
She added: ‘The unique perspectives of Laura Ingraham, Jesse Watters, Sean Hannity, and Greg Gutfeld will ensure our viewers have access to unrivaled coverage from our best-in-class team for years to come.’
Fox’s announcement came as many had pegged Watters to be the clear-cut choice to replace Carlson, given the ratings he commands and the screen presence he exhibits on-set.
His current show, Jesse Watters Primetime, which only began airing last year, currently boasts an average of about 2.6 million viewers a night, while his long-running Saturday show, Watters’ World, drew in 1.9 million viewers before being pulled in 2022.
In addition to his prime time duties, Waters also hosts Fox’s panel-style program The Five – where he appears alongside fellow network personalities Gutfeld, Dana Perino and Judge Jeanine Pirro. It is assumed he will continue in that role while serving as the new 8pm hour host.