Geraldo is posing with his shirt off again, figuratively speaking.
In a recent interview conducted by Mediaite, Geraldo Rivera, a seasoned Fox News personality who departed from the network in late June, disclosed certain inside information pertaining to the repercussions of Tucker Carlson’s historical take on the events surrounding January 6th.
Rivera was interviewed by Mediaite’s editor-in-chief, Aidan McLaughlin, and reporter Diana Falzone.
The conversation started when Falzone inquired Rivera about the interpersonal dynamics observed on Fox News’s The Five, whereby the presence of unresolved tensions between Rivera and an unidentified co-host ultimately resulted in his removal from the show. Rivera served as a co-host on the highly regarded panel program until his departure from the show, which subsequently prompted his decision to resign from the network.
“I have heard rumblings from Fox News insiders that the tension was between you and Fox’s Greg Gutfeld, who at one point actually berated you on Twitter for objecting to Tucker Carlson’s coverage of January 6th. What happened there?” Falzone questioned Rivera.
“Well, you know, I don’t want to focus in on any particular person, you can read the record, but I can tell you what happened vis a vis me and Tucker because that was the real substantive part of it,” Rivera answered.
Rivera openly expressed his opposition to Carlson’s much-criticized remarks during the January 6th violence at the Capitol, which subsequently led to Fox News facing a slander lawsuit. Rivera expressed his disagreement with Carlson’s assertions by characterizing them as “bullshit” in several interviews with multiple publications, resulting in his subsequent suspension.
Rivera stated on Mediaite’s The Interview podcast:
I was shocked and outraged. I mean, I was nauseous over Tucker Carlson’s premise that 9/11, not 9/11, that January 6th was an inside job. So Tucker Carlson began floating the idea, and I didn’t know why. I assumed it was just evidence-based in his own mind. Floating the idea that January 6th was fake, that it was government agents that staged it, the agents provocateur who aggravated everything, that there was no you know, President Trump did not incite a legitimate riot.
Then what happened is he made his remarks and then, you know, deep state operators basically took advantage of it to make Trump look bad, which was preposterous. It was ridiculous. It was you know, I actually said it was bullshit, is what I said to The Washington Post or The New York Times. I forget one or the other because I did several interviews between those two papers at the time.
“I got calls from within Fox. Right on. You know, we’re shocked, we’re outraged by what Tucker is trying to do. Thank you for speaking out, you know from people that could not speak out,” Rivera said, expressing gratitude for individuals who spoke their opinions on behalf of those who were unable to do so, highlighting the network’s internal discontent with Carlson’s theories surrounding the events of January 6th.
“You know, I even advised some prominent people just to cool it, that I could, I’ll take the heat because I felt that I was more bulletproof. I mixed my metaphors there, but I felt that I could say things that others, perhaps more vulnerable in their or more early in their careers, could not say. And so I was suspended for that,” he continued, afterward shifting his focus onto Gutfeld.
“I was suspended whenever, you know, Gutfeld and I had a head-to-head with two incidents, one on abortion rights. I call them insulting punk, and another I forget what it was. They always took his side. So, you know, it’s like. I was. I could sense that I was hanging by a thread. Anyway, there’s another metaphor. But the way it came down, they made a very pragmatic decision, a business decision,” Rivera ended somewhat diplomatically.
According to several media sources, a few current Fox News hosts have considered leaving the network to work with Tucker, who has been posting a version of his show on Twitter despite Fox’s warnings for months.
“Carlson’s Twitter move could have additional reverberations with talent at the network. A handful of Fox anchors have reached out to Carlson directly or had their surrogates contact him to say they are eager to join whatever venture he starts on Twitter when their contracts are up, according to sources,” Variety reported.
Carlson still has a current contract with Fox that is reportedly worth $20 million a year. He is therefore not free to join another network. According to reports, his contract won’t end until January 2025, which is after the 2024 election.
According to Variety, Dominion Voting System’s defamation charges against Fox News were based mostly on statements made on shows broadcast by Sean Hannity, Jeanine Pirro, and Maria Bartiromo after the 2020 presidential election. But because the business wanted to undermine Fox, it decided to pressure the network to sever connections with Carlson, one of its most well-known performers.
Variety reported at the time that “that condition was intended to hurt Fox, and Tucker is just collateral damage.”
The insider continued, “Dominion wanted to punish Fox, and it’s working,” alluding to Fox’s precipitous drop in viewership in the weeks after Carlson’s termination from the network.