Tucker Carlson and Don Lemon: The two most prominent pundits sacked on the same day


Associated Press: Richard Drew

Dom Lemon and Tucker Carlson have both been fired on the same day, in an event that seems almost planned.

Alex Banerjee, News Editor

Within 24 hours, both of the biggest political pundits in the US were fired from their respective media companies. On April 23, 2023 Tucker Carlson and Dom Lemon were fired from Fox news and CNN, leaving many shocked.

Tucker Carlson had the largest audience in cable news history and had the biggest show in the US, so it came to many as a surprise that Fox would oust him. Though when looking at the reasons for his firing it is not as startling.

For years Carlson has been under fire for promotion of racist ideals like “The Great Replacement” theory and even calling the Iraqi people “semiliterate primitive monkeys”. In recent times he’s been in legal trouble for his promotion of the “stolen” election, leading to a defamation lawsuit by Dominion voting.

Carlson’s endorsement of the election rigging conspiracy led to a $1.6 billion dollar lawsuit by Dominion voting systems, the company that ran the election voting system in 2020. The suit settled at $787 million just six days before Carlson’s firing, possibly leading to even more strained ties with Fox.

Insiders at Fox leaked texts from the January 6th insurrection that alarmed many of the higher ups. In the texts Carlson states “it’s not how white men fight” along with other racial comments. The texts came after a discrimination suit by former Fox producer Abby Grossberg against Carlson and Fox.

After leaving Fox, Carlson wasn’t super vocal until May 9, when he announced the continuation of his show on Twitter. In a video titled “We’re back.” posted to his Twitter account he claims that the media is full of lies and his continuation of his show will seek truth and honesty. Since the announcement his account has been not active.

While Carlson announced a new path for him after Fox, Don Lemon is yet to announce any further plans after CNN. 

Like Carlson, Lemon was fired for a culmination of events but mainly a string of misogynistic comments and a heated debate with Republican candidate Vivek Ramaswamy. Where Ramaswamy claimed that Black people gained all their rights immediately after the Civil War, completely disregarding the civil rights movement in its entirety. Lemon fired back at Ramaswamy on this comment leading to a heated debate that many found Lemon in the right for, though the higher ups at CNN may have thought otherwise.

On the other hand, Lemon has made misogynistic comments against colleagues and politicians for years. In many texts, spanning his 17 year career at CNN that many found offensive, abusive, and very harmful to others, leading to a demotion in 2008.

In recent times Lemon has been under fire for his comments on candidate Nikki Haley and her being “past her prime”. He then went on to continue his misogynistic comments with “When a woman is considered to be in her prime — in her 20s, 30s and maybe her 40s.”

Even his co-host Poppy Harlow pushed back with “Are you talking about prime for childbearing or are you talking about prime for being president?” and Lemon replied, “Don’t shoot the messenger, I’m just saying what the facts are. Google it”.

Misogyny was not the only thing that stained Don Lemon’s career at CNN, sexual assault cases have been brought up multiple times against Lemon by young men just joining the industry. While they were eventually dropped, they still made a lasting mark on his career, and brought light to his prior relationships with young impressionable co-workers.

While the future of both pundits is uncertain, their impact on their respective parties is not. They were both of the most influential cable news anchors in recent decades, and their impressions will be lasting.