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Tucker Carlson ‘will Not Be Silenced’ As Fox News Seeks To Ban Twitter Show

Tucker Carlson’s lawyer says he “will not be silenced by anyone” after it was reported that Fox News had sent the prime-time host it fired a letter demanding he cease and desist presenting a new show on Twitter.

“Doubling down on the most catastrophic programming decision in the history of the cable news industry, Fox is now demanding that Tucker Carlson be silent until after the 2024 election,” lawyer Harmeet Dhillon told Axios, which first reported the Fox letter.

“Tucker will not be silenced by anyone … He is a singularly important voice on matters of public interest in our country, and will remain so.”

Dhillon is a prominent Republican attorney who recently failed in an attempt to lead the GOP national committee.

Fox fired Carlson in April, shortly after reaching a $787.5m settlement in a defamation lawsuit brought by Dominion Voting Systems over the broadcast of Donald Trump’s lies about electoral fraud in his 2020 defeat by Joe Biden.

Fox has called reports that claim Carlson’s firing was linked to the settlement “categorically false”. Dominion has said the settlement was closed six days before Carlson was ousted.

Axios said the cease and desist letter, marked “not for publication”, came as Fox continued to pay Carlson, whose contract runs to the end of next year. Other outlets confirmed the letter.

Lawyers for Carlson have said Fox is seeking to deny his first amendment right to free speech.

A Fox spokesperson did not immediately respond to a Guardian request for comment.

Carlson debuted his new show, Tucker on Twitter, last week. His first 10-minute monologue concerned Ukraine and Russia, media coverage of that conflict and complaints about coverage of other issues including UFOs, Jeffrey Epstein and 9/11.

By Monday, Twitter said the first video had been viewed nearly 115m times.

The second show, 12-and-a-half minutes long, was entitled “Cling to your taboos!” and included complaints about affirmative action, supposed acceptance of child abuse and the prosecution of January 6 rioters.

By Monday, Twitter said it had reached nearly 55m views.

Carlson’s producer, Justin Wells, tweeted: “Next Episode of Tucker on Twitter coming Tuesday: Tucker’s response to the indictment of President Donald Trump.”

Axios said Carlson planned to vary the content of his show, with “big names lined up” to appear.

Observers have expressed skepticism that Carlson’s free speech defence will work.

The tech writer and podcaster Kara Swisher said: “Free speech? Hardly. He made a new show. Twitter is a media platform. He just wants to get out of a binding contract he signed and got paid big money for.”

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