Fox News host Jesse Watters suggested that two of his Trump-skeptical colleagues ought to be fired, as revealed in once-private text messages dated shortly after the 2020 presidential election.
In a series of text messages acquired by The Daily Beast, Watters complained to Tucker Carlson about two colleagues whose coldness towards the 45th president seemed to put them out of touch with the network’s audience.
“[Chris] Wallace [Neil] Cavuto and other have got to go. Need some fresh blood. Should hire some [T]rump people,” Watters texted Carlson on November 13. (Cavuto remains on the network, Wallace ultimately left Fox to work on behalf of CNN in 2022 following complaints to Fox management about Carlson’s coverage of the January 6 Capitol snafu).
The texts were released as part of the lawsuit by Dominion Voting Systems against Fox News in an apparent attempt to embarrass Watters and Carlson. However, the messages would seem to underscore Watters’ apparent sincerity in supporting Trump, as his candid personal correspondences and criticisms of colleagues are harmonious with his stated opinions on air.
Western Journal writer Joe Saunders speculated that the leak would backfire and make Fox News viewers more sympathetic to Watters.
“This probably seems damning to a Daily Beast writer,” writes Saunders. To the typical Trump-supporting Fox News viewer, the words wouldn’t have been particularly remarkable. If anything, it would make Watters look even better (like the leaked videos showing Carlson in down times on the Fox set just made conservatives like him more).”
The new text messages are part of a series of leaks of “confidential discovery material” by individuals with knowledge of the Dominion case, and the leaks have drawn the ire of Fox News representatives.
Earlier this month, in response to prior leaks, Fox News sent a letter to Dominion’s legal team demanding accountability for the release of private correspondences from Fox News employees. Nonetheless, the leaks have continued and may yet continue as Fox navigates the messy aftermath of the Dominion lawsuit and Carlson’s controversial firing.
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