Pages

Sunday, 7 February 2021

Fox News is in a race with itself to the bottom': Lou Dobbs retweets fans attacking network for cancelling his high-rated show after voting firm Smartmatic filed $2.7billion lawsuit, and thanks Trump for his support

 Lou Dobbs has taken to Twitter to thank his followers for their support while retweeting fans blasting Fox News after it abruptly pulled his high-rated show off the air. 

The cancellation of Fox Business Network's Lou Dobbs Tonight on Friday came as a shock to viewers, many of whom have accused the network of trying to silence the outspoken host. 

Dobbs, 75, on Saturday responded to a flood of messages of support from fans, including Donald Trump who released a statement saying the host 'is and was great' and that 'nobody loves America more than Lou.' 


'He had a large and loyal following that will be watching closely for his next move, and that following includes me,' Trump added. 

Dobbs replied to the message in a tweet saying: 'Thanks for your kind words Mr. President. God bless you and all the American patriots who make this country great'.

Lou Dobbs Tonight aired for the final time on Friday night as Fox News is reported to be parting ways with the 75-year-old host (pictured) who is among its staunchest Trump loyalists

Lou Dobbs Tonight aired for the final time on Friday night as Fox News is reported to be parting ways with the 75-year-old host (pictured) who is among its staunchest Trump loyalists

Dobbs responded to messages of support from fans, including Donald Trump, who released a statement praising the longtime news host

Dobbs responded to messages of support from fans, including Donald Trump, who released a statement praising the longtime news host 

Dobbs, 75, also retweeted numerous posts attacking the network which had famously stood by the president in times of scandal. He shared a tweet by former Trump advisor Sebastian Gorka who warned 'Fox is Finished'

Dobbs, 75, also retweeted numerous posts attacking the network which had famously stood by the president in times of scandal. He shared a tweet by former Trump advisor Sebastian Gorka who warned 'Fox is Finished' 

Dobbs was one of Fox News' staunchest supporters of Trump and had repeatedly pushed the president's claims of voter fraud and assertions that he won the 2020 election on air. 

The cancellation of show, which had aired on the channel for nearly a decade, comes a day after voting software company Smartmatic sued Fox News and three of its hosts - Dobbs, Maria Bartiromo and Jeanine Pirro - for defamation over their coverage of Trump's election fraud claims. 

Whether the cancellation ends Dobbs's career with Fox Business has not been addressed, and the network has not commented further on the decision. 

Dobbs in the meantime has been active on Twitter where he has retweeted numerous posts from followers slamming Fox News's decision to pull the plug. 

Among them was a tweet by former Trump adviser Sebastian Gorka saying: 'He's a Patriot. He speaks the Truth. He doesn't back down. That's why @FoxNews had to cancel @LouDobbs #FOXisFinished'.

Another tweet reposted by Dobbs said: '[Dobbs] is one of the best anchors in the business. Fox is in a race with itself to the bottom.' 

'Fox News is desperate to be accepted by people who will not accept them. Cancelling [Dobbs] is not going to satisfy the blood lust of the rage mob,' said another retweet. 

Dobbs has not directly responded to Fox News regarding the shock decision, but has replied to some followers expressing their support

Dobbs has not directly responded to Fox News regarding the shock decision, but has replied to some followers expressing their support 

Dobbs did not directly comment on the show's cancellation but replied to some followers tweeting about the news, saying, 'Thank you for your kind words!' 

In a statement Friday, Fox News Media said the move was part of routine programming alterations that it had foreshadowed in an announcement last fall.

Fox News Media 'regularly considers programming changes and plans have been in place to launch new formats as appropriate post-election, including on Fox Business - this is part of those planned changes,' the company said.

The statement appeared to distance the cancellation from a multibillion-dollar defamation lawsuit filed against the company Thursday by Smartmatic. 

The software company is looking for $2.7billion in the suit, claiming that Fox knew the election wasn't rigged but spread the narrative of a stolen election which damaged its business. 

Fox had previously stood by its coverage and said it will 'defend this meritless lawsuit in court'. 

It also comes as Fox executives feared a shake-up after owner Rupert Murdoch arrived in New York following a months-long quarantine in the U.K. 

Judge Jeanine Pirro
Maria Bartiromo

The cancellation comes a day after voting software company Smartmatic sued Fox News and three of its hosts - Dobbs, Maria Bartiromo (pictured right) and Jeanine Pirro (pictured left) - for $2.7billion for defamation over their coverage of Trump's election fraud claims

It also comes as Fox executives feared a shake-up after owner Rupert Murdoch (pictured above) arrived in New York following a months-long quarantine in the U.K.

It also comes as Fox executives feared a shake-up after owner Rupert Murdoch (pictured above) arrived in New York following a months-long quarantine in the U.K.

The News Corp. boss reportedly took on a more hands-on role at the right-wing network after his arrival alongside his son Lachlan.

Top of the priority list is to tackle the decline in ratings seen since Donald Trump lost the 2020 presidential election in November, insiders said.

After a successful 2020, Fox had fallen behind CNN and MSNBC in the ratings since the election as conservative viewers switched off.   


The network has recently hired former Trump economic adviser Larry Kudlow who is believed to be in the running for his own daily program. 

The Times reports that the former longtime CNBC host may be a candidate to replace Dobbs on a more permanent basis. 

A Fox representative confirmed the cancellation of the Dobbs' show, which airs at 5pm and 7pm on the Fox Business Network, with the Los Angeles Times. 

While his program had the largest audience on any business news channel, with around 300,000 viewers a night in the 7 p.m. Eastern slot, it continued to make a loss for Fox. 

Advertisers steered clear of the show over fears of consumer boycotts due to Dobbs' provocative style.  

Dobbs had pushed unfounded claims about flaws with Smartmatic during his show

Dobbs had pushed unfounded claims about flaws with Smartmatic during his show

Former Trump economic adviser Larry Kudlow (pictured) is a favorite to replace Dobbs

Former Trump economic adviser Larry Kudlow (pictured) is a favorite to replace Dobbs

The 75-year-old remains under contract with Fox but according to the Times, it is unlikely he will appear on the company's networks again. 

His show will be renamed 'Fox Business Tonight' from next week with Jackie DeAngelis and David Asman acting as rotating substitute hosts. Asman had already filled in for Dobbs on Friday.   

Dobbs has also frequently appeared on the Fox News Channel as commentator, as well as hosting his own Business Network show. 

The Times reports that the discussion about replacing him was already underway before the Smartmatic suit was filed on Thursday. 

Dobbs' anti-immigration stance had previouls led to his departure from CNN in 2009

Dobbs' anti-immigration stance had previouls led to his departure from CNN in 2009

'As we said in October, Fox News Media regularly considers programming changes and plans have been in place to launch new formats as appropriate post-election, including on Fox Business,' the representative said in the statement. 

'This is part of those planned changes. A new 5 p.m. program will be announced in the near future.'

The network has already made some changes as it transitions from covering Trump to the Biden administration. 

As well as hiring Kudlow, high-profile news anchor Martha MacCallum was moved from her 7pm slot and a fixture of rotating hosts are now overseeing an opinion program in her stead before a permanent new host is named. 

The removal of Dobbs could be seen as an attempt to offer balance to programming while not alienating less ideological voters. 

He was originally signed to Fox by its former chief executive Roger Ailes in 2011 and has remained loyal to Trump as an outspoken advocate of his economic and immigration policies.  

Dobbs' tough anti-immigration stance had previously led to his departure from CNN in 2009. 

While at CNN, he had been regarded as a pioneer of TV business news and led the show 'Moneyline', winning a Peabody Award in 1987 for his coverage of the stock market crash. 

Yet his incendiary rhetoric was let loose at Fox where he immediately made a name for himself with the false claims that President Obama was not born in the United States.  

Fox anchor Lou Dobbs was originally signed to the network by former CEO Roger Ailes in 2011

Fox anchor Lou Dobbs was originally signed to the network by former CEO Roger Ailes in 2011

Trump's election fraud lawyers Rudolph Giuliani (pictured above) and Sidney Powell appeared on Dobbs' show and were given a platform to push the unfounded claims even further

Trump's election fraud lawyers Rudolph Giuliani (pictured above) and Sidney Powell appeared on Dobbs' show and were given a platform to push the unfounded claims even further

Both Giuliani and Powell (pictured) have also been named in the Smartmatic defamation suit

Both Giuliani and Powell (pictured) have also been named in the Smartmatic defamation suit

Dobbs was particularly angered that Republicans did not do more to argue Trump's baseless voter fraud claims and often voiced his anger on his show. 

Trump's election fraud lawyers Rudolph Giuliani and Sidney Powell appeared on his show and were given a platform through which to push the unfounded claims even further. 

In a show following the election on November 30, Dobbs told Powell that Trump must take 'drastic action, dramatic action to make certain that the integrity of this election is understood or lack of it, the crimes that have been committed against him and the American people'. 

'And if the Justice Department doesn't want to do it, if the FBI cannot do it, then we have to find other resources within the federal government,' he added. 

Rudy Giuliani slams Dominion voting machines in public
Loaded: 0%
Progress: 0%
0:00
Previous
Play
Skip
Mute
Current Time0:00
/
Duration Time1:08
Fullscreen
Need Text

Both Giuliani and Powell have also been named in the Smartmatic defamation suit. 

The suit – on the heels of another by Dominion Voting Systems – blasts the election fraud narrative that Trump's lawyers put forward as he sought to cling to power – and claimed Fox used its powerful airwaves to defame the company in the process.

'The Earth is round. Two plus two equals four. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris won the 2020 election for President and Vice President of the United States,' the suit begins. 

'The election was not stolen, rigged, or fixed. These are facts. They are demonstrable and irrefutable.' 

The suit names Giuliani, who spearheaded his election fraud claims in TV interviews, on his own podcast, and in testimony before panels organized by Republican lawmakers as Trump sought to overturn results. 

It also names former Trump campaign lawyer Powell, who the campaign sought to separate itself from after the press conference, although Powell showed up at the White House in the last weeks of the administration.

The complaint filed in New York State Court names the Rupert Murdoch-owned Fox Corp., the Fox News Network and Fox hosts Bartiromo, Dobbs and Pirro as defendants.

The suit filed on Thursday identifies the three Fox hosts by name

The suit filed on Thursday identifies the three Fox hosts by name

Rudy Giuliani points to a map as he speaks to the press about various lawsuits related to the 2020 election, inside the Republican National Committee headquarters on November 19

Rudy Giuliani points to a map as he speaks to the press about various lawsuits related to the 2020 election, inside the Republican National Committee headquarters on November 19

Unlike Dominion, whose technology was used in 24 states, Smartmatic's participation in the 2020 election was restricted to Los Angeles County, which votes heavily Democratic. 

Smartmatic's limited role notwithstanding, Fox aired at least 13 reports falsely stating or implying the company had stolen the 2020 vote in cahoots with Venezuela's socialist government, according to the complaint. 

This alleged 'disinformation campaign' continued even after then-Attorney General William Barr said the Department of Justice could find no evidence of widespread voter fraud. 

'Night after night, publication after publication, Fox News reached out to its millions of viewers and readers around the world with a story: Joe Biden and Kamala Harris did not win the 2020 election; Smartmatic stole the election for them,' it said, pointing to the role of the network, which aired Trump surrogates and allies making the claims. 

The suit says the election fraud claim not only caused direct financial harm to the election company, but harmed the country as well. 'The story turned neighbor against neighbor,' it says. 'The story led a mob to attack the U.S. Capitol.' 

Under the theory spelled out in the suit, the defendants knew Trump lost, but wanted him to win.

'Defendants had an obvious problem with their story. They needed a villain. They needed someone to blame. They needed someone whom they could get others to hate' – prompting them to invent the tale involving Smartmatic.

'Without any true villain, Defendants invented one. Defendants decided to make Smartmatic the villain in their story,' it says. 

Smartmatic's 285-page complaint said the defendants 'have always known these facts.

'They knew the election was not rigged or fixed,' it said, but they 'decided to tell people that the election was stolen' and to 'make Smartmatic the villain in their story.'

In December, Dobbs aired a bizarre segment taking on election fraud claims, evidently after receiving a 20-page letter from the company threatening legal action.

 ''There are lots of opinions about the integrity of the election, the irregularities of mail-in voting, of election voting machines and voting software,' the host said. 

The network later aired fact-check segments in December which included an expert saying he had not seen any evidence of the software being used for fraud. 

Pirros' show and Bartiromo's aired similar segments. 

In a statement, Fox said 'Fox News Media is committed to providing the full context of every story with in-depth reporting and clear opinion.

'We are proud of our 2020 election coverage and will vigorously defend this meritless lawsuit in court.'

No comments:

Post a comment