Tucker Carlson Is Out at Fox News and QAnon Is Taking It Just Fine

Just kidding, they’re spinning up new theories about why he left and hailing him as a “martyr” for the QAnon cause.

For QAnon John, Tucker Carlson’s abrupt departure from Fox News was a huge blow.

The QAnon influencer, who runs a series of QAnon-focused conferences and whose real name is John Sabal, was scheduled to appear on Carlson’s highly-rated primetime show in the coming weeks, according to an email Sabal shared on his Telegram channel on Monday.


That appearance would have been the biggest platform Sabal would have appeared on by far, and it would have given him a level of credibility far beyond his profile in the QAnon world.

But sadly for Sabal, that opportunity has now vanished.

“I was supposed to go on April 19th, but because of the endless breaking news, I was set to be rescheduled for either this week, or next,” Sabal wrote. “Looking back, I would have been one of Tucker’s LAST segments with Fox News.”

And it wasn’t just QAnon John who’s lamenting Carlson’s departure. The broader QAnon community, who viewed Carlson as their guy within the mainstream media apparatus, is bemoaning the loss of a host who helped propel their fringe ideas to new audiences and helped boost the credibility of their most outlandish and dangerous conspiracy theories.

“[Fox News] are going to find out just how LOVED & RESPECTED Tucker Carlson was at their network,” QAnon John wrote on his Telegram channel. “They are going to realize that they just made a HUGE martyr out of him, and cemented his legacy FOREVER as the one of the Greatest Of All Time.”

It’s easy to see why Carlson held such a position of esteem within a movement that uniformly despises the mainstream media.

In addition to promoting white supremacist and anti-LGBTQ content, Carlson has routinely boosted conspiracies that have originated within the QAnon community. On the air, he was one of former President Donald Trump’s most vocal supporters—while in private, he derided Trump.


Carlson’s promotion of the baseless election fraud conspiracy and promotion of anti-vaccine claims have added to his standing among QAnon followers in recent years.

And while he has never openly said he believes in QAnon, he has defended the movement. In January 2021, weeks after QAnon followers played a central role in the storming of the Capitol, Carlson defended the movement, mocking the idea that QAnon posed a major threat to the U.S.

“Ooooh… Mr. Tom Friedman thinks this is all very frightening,” Carlson said, referring to comments made by the New York Times journalist in an interview with CNN during which Friedman said he was worried about the threat QAnon posed to the country.

A month later, he claimed that QAnon was a conspiracy theory concocted by the liberal media, and claimed he could find no evidence it existed on the internet. In March 2021, he called QAnon supporters “gentle patriots.”

As a result, QAnon followers praised Carlson as the person "probably standing up the most for our movement than anyone in the [mainstream media] right now.”

Just last month, prominent Qanon influencer Jeffrey Pedersen said on his show that Carlson was “doing us a great service” and was “as brave as he can get on the platform that he’s on.” Pedersen’s co-host Shannon Townsend concurred, saying Carlson had “brought a lot of great, great attention to our movement” and that “there’s nobody that said ‘QAnon’ on his show more than Tucker Carlson.”


Neither Fox News nor Carlson has explained why the top-rated host left the station so suddenly, providing fertile ground for QAnon believers to speculate wildly about the reason.

Liz Crokin, a major promoter of the Pizzagate conspiracy theory, suggested that because Carlson’s final segment on his last show included him eating pizza, his firing had something to do with the conspiracy theory. 

image (9).png

Liz Crokin/Twitter

Others echoed the conspiracy put forward by America’s biggest anti-vaxxer—and presidential candidate—Robert Kennedy, Jr., that Tucker was punished for airing a segment last week criticizing the COVID vaccine rollout in the U.S.

“Fox fires Tucker Carlson five days after he crosses the red line by acknowledging that the TV networks pushed a deadly and ineffective vaccine to please their Pharma advertisers,” Kennedy wrote on Twitter.

Still other QAnon followers linked Carlson’s firing to the appearance on “60 Minutes” on Sunday of Ray Epps, the Trump supporter Carlson has baselessly accused of being a government agent who incited the insurrection.

Others speculated that Carlson was fired for platforming the wildest conspiracy theories about election fraud in the 2020 election—but not because it led, in part, to the company having to pay Dominion Voting Systems $787 million. Instead, one popular Twitter account speculated that Tucker was fired to prevent him from pushing more conspiracy theories about the 2024 vote. 


“They won’t be able to use the COVID mail-in ballot scam in 2024, and we’re all going to be subjected to the most overwhelming information operation in history,” Darryl Cooper wrote. “They can’t have a guy like Tucker out there.”

But one of the most common reasons given for Carlson’s firing in QAnon channels on Monday was echoed by Pizzagate promoter and right-wing troll Jack Posobiec: “Tucker managed in just a couple of years to get fired from Fox because he told too much truth.”

Most QAnon believers, while lamenting the loss of a perceived ally in the mainstream media, were upbeat about what Carlson would do next—and this being a conspiracy movement, they had a lot of ideas about what the TV star should do next. 

Over on the Great Awakening message board, members speculated that he could join up with right-wing filmmaker James O’Keeffe, who was also recently fired from Project Veritas, where his job was to secretly film people in an attempt to discredit mainstream media organizations and progressive groups.

Another member suggested that Carlson could become the star of a Trump-backed news station. “Truth News Network incoming,” the member wrote.

But in all QAnon channels and message boards on Monday, there was one prediction that seemingly everyone wanted to come true now that Carlson’s out of a job. 

“So, I just found out Tucker moved to Florida last week…Trump/Carlson 2024. How about it?!?!? BEST. TICKET. EVER,” Sabal wrote on Telegram.

Want the best of VICE News straight to your inbox? Sign up here.