Fox News Execs Were Plotting to Fire Lou Dobbs Long Before the 2020 Election: ‘We Shouldn’t Renew Lou’

Dobbs’ goose was cooked by the time he became one of the network’s most vigorous supporters of Trump’s stolen-election lie

Lou Dobbs was widely considered among Fox News’ most vigorous pushers of unsupported election-fraud claims in 2021 – but his extra-out-there theories and even potentially defamatory statements aren’t ultimately what did in “Lou Dobbs Tonight” on the Fox Business channel.

Fox News’ top executives were maneuvering to fire Dobbs for more than a year before his show was declared canceled in early 2021 – news that came abruptly just a month after the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol. Suzanne Scott, current Fox News CEO, made the revelation in deposition testimony released this week by Dominion Voting Systems as part of its $1.6 billion defamation lawsuit against the network.

At one point Dominion lawyers ask Scott to reads out loud a text message she got from Rupert Murdoch in mid-January: “We shouldn’t renew Lou Dobbs … whenever his contract is up.”

But she was already way ahead of her boss.

“I had been talking to the President of Fox Business for more than a year about making a change with Lou,” Scott said. “You know, I had had a lot of success through the years of making some talent and programming changes to the benefit of ratings, and I thought if we could bring in a big-name talent [names redacted] that that would be good for Fox Business.”

Scott also said that even if firing Dobbs would have been Murdoch’s idea, it wouldn’t have mattered: She calls the shots.

“Mr. Murdoch told you to fire Lou Dobbs, didn’t he?,” a Dominion lawyer asks.

“I don’t remember that specifically,” she replied, “but, you know, that did not factor into anything as it related to Lou Dobbs.”

“Rupert and Lachlan never tell me to do anything,” she continued.”They are extremely respectful of not just myself but our business, but that’s not to say that from time to time they don’t make suggestions. They do own the company. And I learned a long time ago people — you know, we’re a visual business.· I get suggestions everywhere. They are my bosses, so I take — I listen to them.· But they make suggestions, they don’t tell me what to do.”

Scott did not deny that Dobbs was bringing in decent ratings, and was asked by the Dominion lawyer “what was the problem” with the veteran host.

“I just thought it would be interesting to bring in a different talent to refresh the lineup and engage the audience, and I thought that Larry Kudlow was a great opportunity for that,” she said.

An April 17 date has been set for the Fox/Dominion trial in Delaware.