Brian Kilmeade, co-host of “Fox & Friends,” addressed the network’s firing of Fox News host Tucker Carlson on Monday night as he hosted Carlson’s former show during the 8 p.m. EST hour.
“As you probably have heard, Fox News and Tucker Carlson have agreed to part ways,” Kilmeade said. “I wish Tucker the best. I’m great friends with Tucker and always will be. But right now, it’s time for ‘Fox News Tonight,’ so let’s get started.”
Here's the open to the first episode of 'Fox News Tonight,' hosted by Brian Kilmeade, in place of 'Tucker Carlson Tonight' and fired host #Tucker Carlson.
Kilmeade VERY briefly addresses Tucker's firings, say he's "great friends with Tucker and always will be." pic.twitter.com/yljOGgIijs
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) April 25, 2023
The unexpected firing of the network’s top-rated prime time host was Monday’s top news story.
“FOX News Media and Tucker Carlson have agreed to part ways,” Fox News said in statement. “We thank him for his service to the network as a host and prior to that as a contributor.”
“Mr. Carlson’s last program was Friday April 21st” the statement continued. “Fox News Tonight will air live at 8 PM/ET starting this evening as an interim show helmed by rotating FOX News personalities until a new host is named.”
The news of Carlson’s departure comes just a week after syndicated talk radio host and former Secret Service agent Dan Bongino announced that he was leaving Fox News, citing a breakdown in contract negotiations.
“Folks, regretfully, last week was my last show on Fox News on the Fox News Channel,” Bongino said on his podcast at the time. “So the show ending last week was tough. And I want you to know it’s not some big conspiracy. I promise you.”
“There’s not, there’s no acrimony,” he added. “This wasn’t some, like, WWE brawl that happened. We just couldn’t come to terms on an extension. And that’s really it.”