Fox News’ Tucker Carlson may be back from the vacation he suddenly took after calling white supremacy “a hoax,” but some advertisers are still AWOL. The loss of advertisers after the comments follows a months-long trend for the host, whose previous comments on immigration and women also made headlines.
Carlson resumed hosting “Tucker Carlson Tonight” Monday, but commercial breaks were missing ads from a handful of previous advertisers like HelloFresh, Nestle, SteinMart, Calm and SoFi. As pointed out by Media Matters for America, those five companies are among the more than 70 that have declined to continue advertising on the show since December 2018.
The New York Times reported on the dip on the latest dip in advertisers, saying that a Monday night episode from August 2018 had 16 minutes of ads and 36 commercials compared to 13.5 minutes of ads and 23 nationally-aired spots this Monday. Of those 23, the Times said, eight were promotions for other Fox properties. The Times cited ad measurement company iSpot.tv.
Jeff Collins, Executive Vice President of Advertising Sales for Fox News, told TheWrap in an emailed statement, “Fox News is on track to deliver another record year in advertising revenue. Advertising budgets that were impacted have been re-expressed into other programs across the network.”
He added, “We have devoted promotional time for the launch of our newest platform Fox Nation throughout our key programs.”
In March, analysis showed that paid advertisements for “Tucker Carlson Tonight” had dropped a whopping 61 percent since liberal group Media Matters for America unearthed old recordings in which Carlson made disparaging comments about women and minorities.
At the time, TheWrap reported that Carlson remained the most-watched show at 8 p.m. in all of cable, but more than 30 advertisers had pulled their ads since December, when Carlson said that “an endless chain of migrant caravans” was making “our own country poorer, and dirtier, and more divided.”
Similarly, the Times reported Wednesday that Carlson drew 3.1 million viewers Monday, the second-largest audience in cable that night, behind only his Fox colleague Sean Hannity.