Texas Governor Greg Abbott wants the company to address the journalist’s claim that Fox fired him on its behalf.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott called on Dominion Voting Systems to explain its alleged role in Fox News’ firing of Tucker Carlson in a tweet on Saturday. Carlson accused his former employer several days ago of firing him as part of its settlement with the voting machine manufacturer.
“If Dominion wants to do business with Texas in the future, they should first answer questions about what role, if any, they played in silencing a prominent conservative journalist,” Abbott tweeted, citing recent reports alleging “Dominion Voting Systems demanded that Tucker Carlson be fired as part of a litigation settlement” with Fox News.
Carlson’s lawyers reportedly accused Fox News of breach of contract and fraud in a letter sent earlier this week, which also claimed he had been fired as part of the network’s $787.5 million settlement with Dominion. Specifically, the former host’s counsel claimed Fox broke an agreement not to leak Carlson’s private messages to the media or use them “to take any adverse employment action against him,” as well as a promise not to settle with Dominion “in a way which would indicate wrongdoing” on his part or harm his reputation.
The letter’s claims would invalidate the non-compete clause in Carlson’s contract, freeing him up to launch the Twitter-based news show he teased last week.
Carlson was told by a board member at Fox that he had been fired as part of the Dominion settlement, Axios reported on Tuesday, citing inside sources.
A Fox News spokesperson told Axios it was “categorically false” that Dominion had made firing Carlson a required part of the settlement, while an outside attorney for Dominion confirmed that “Dominion did not insist on them firing Tucker Carlson as part of the settlement.”
The voting machine manufacturer’s defamation case against Fox was settled just as it was about to go to trial after internal messages from Carlson were unearthed in discovery. The messages’ content was supposedly so repugnant that it led the network to pay up rather than risk putting Carlson on the stand to answer questions about what he’d written. However, some have questioned how reported examples – describing group violence against an Antifa protester as “not how white men fight” or referring to female viewers as “postmenopausal” – were any more controversial than the content of his or other Fox shows.
Sources who spoke to the New York Times nevertheless claimed Fox was so repelled it considered hiring an outside law firm to investigate other potential liabilities linked to Carlson. Meanwhile, his messages have continued to leak to the public.