Howard Kurtz, host of Fox News’ Sunday show “MediaBuzz,” addressed the cancellation of “Lou Dobbs Tonight,” saying Dobbs “sometimes went too far” in defending former President Trump.
“I’ve known Lou as a talented broadcaster for decades. He was controversial at CNN. He’s been controversial in the decade he’s been here,” Kurtz said Sunday. “Dobbs became one of the most passionate defenders of Donald Trump during his presidency, and of his claims of election fraud… In my opinion, Dobbs sometimes went too far. But that was his right as an opinion host, and it’s Fox’s right to decide its programming. I want to wish Lou the best in the future.”
You can watch the the clip of Kurtz in the video above.
Dobbs was one of three Fox News hosts, along with Jeanine Pirro and Maria Bartiromo, who were named in a $2.7 billion lawsuit against Fox News by voting machine company Smartmatic. Smartmatic accused the three hosts and the network’s coverage of the 2020 election as a whole of causing defamatory damage to the company by advancing Donald Trump’s unsubstantiated claims and of “conspiracy to defame and disparage Smartmatic and its election technology and software.”
Dobbs accused the Republican Party after the election of not doing enough to support Trump’s claims and invited Trump figures like Rudy Giuliani and Sidney Powell onto the show to push conspiracy theories against the former president.
“Lou Dobbs Tonight” had the highest-rated show on Fox Business, averaging 300,000 viewers in the 7 p.m. ET time slot. Even prior to the election, Dobbs had been a controversial media figure, espousing strident anti-immigrant viewpoints that led to his departure from CNN in 2009 and vigorously supporting Trump’s immigration policies over the past four years. Jackie DeAngelis and David Asman, the latter of whom had filled in for Dobbs on Friday, will host a substitute show in Dobbs’ timeslot called “Fox Business Tonight” until a permanent replacement show is created. Dobbs will remain under contract with Fox but is not expected to have any on-air presence.
“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 – this is part of those planned changes,” Fox said in a statement on Friday confirming Dobbs’ cancellation. “A new 5PM program will be announced in the near future.”