Former “Fox News Sunday” host Chris Wallace’s sudden jump over to CNN+ feels like a betrayal to his viewers and the channel that paid him, no doubt well, these past 18 years.
The Associated Press reported Fox offered Wallace, whose contract had expired, a multiyear extension and a pay raise to stay with the network, but he refused.
Instead, the veteran newsman made a shocking announcement Sunday that he was leaving to “try something new,” though acknowledging Fox had treated him well.
“I have been free to report to the best of my ability, to cover the stories I think are important, to hold our country’s leaders to account. It’s been a great ride,” Wallace said of his time at Fox.
“But after 18 years, I have decided to leave Fox. I want to try something new, to go beyond politics to all the things I’m interested in. I’m ready for a new adventure. And I hope you’ll check it out,” he said, while saying he thought of his audience, which averaged over 1.2 million viewers during the last year, as something of a “community.”
Just saw this
I have said for the past year plus. when I stopped watching Fox News, that I would never even consider going back as long as Chris Wallace worked there
Still haven’t decided, but I might at least start watching Tucker again
— LEO Mike ????♂️? (@mpfive0) December 12, 2021
Fox News contributor Guy Benson, who was a panelist on “Fox News Sunday” over the weekend, tweeted his departure was a “very well-kept secret.”
Customarily, when your employer treats you well and your customers (in this case, his viewing audience) do too, you give them a heads up if you’re planning to move on.
Wallace did not do so.
Perhaps the newsman has a flair for the dramatic, and wanted to make his exit with the most panache possible.
Wallace released a statement soon after “Fox News Sunday” ended saying he would be joining the streaming service CNN+ to host a weekday program that will premiere in 2022.
“I am thrilled to join CNN+,” Wallace said in a statement. “After decades in broadcast and cable news, I am excited to explore the world of streaming. I look forward to the new freedom and flexibility streaming affords in interviewing major figures across the news landscape — and finding new ways to tell stories.”
They cited Carlson’s three-part series “Patriot Purge” about the Jan. 6 Capitol incursion, which is streaming on Fox Nation, as something Wallace complained about.
In the series, Carlson asks the questions that should be answered like, “Why are people who engaged in no violence, or in some cases never entered the Capitol, being treated like violent criminals?”
At the same time, the federal government has shown little to no interest in prosecuting those who rioted outside the White House in May 2020 and the Portland federal courthouse for months.
If Wallace were truly concerned about the fidelity of the programming at Fox News, moving to CNN certainly is not a remedy.
That network will go down in infamy as one of the lead proponents of the debunked Russiagate saga, which was nothing but a Democratic ruse to take down a duly-elected president.
Wallace’s jump to CNN is likely about the green as much as anything else.
Variety reported in July that CNN nabbed MSNBC’s Kasie Hunt for over $1 million per year.
How much more would the struggling network likely pay for Wallace?
Well, Wallace got his moment in the limelight, and he certainly did it with as much flair as possible, but what it lacked was the respect that his audience deserved.
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