Former Fox News host Tucker Carlson reportedly has floated the idea of moderating an alternative GOP primary debate on his own forum.
The alternative debate would be outside the control of the Republican National Committee and Fox News.
According to The Washington Post, Carlson has discussed the idea with Donald Trump.
🚨BREAKING: Tucker Carlson Reportedly in Talks With Trump to moderate alternate GOP primary debatehttps://t.co/eD6W61FgXi
— Benny Johnson (@bennyjohnson) May 4, 2023
BREAKING: Tucker Carlson has been in talks with President Trump about moderating a primary debate outside the control of the RNC & Fox News.
This would be incredible.
— Pro Swing Trading 📈😎🇺🇸 (@Pro__Trading) May 4, 2023
The Washington Post reported:
Most ambitiously, Carlson wants to moderate his own GOP candidate forum, outside of the usual strictures of the Republican National Committee debate system. The idea, which he has discussed with Donald Trump, the front-runner for the party nomination, would test his vaunted sway over conservative politics. And it would take a jab at his former employer — Fox is hosting the first official primary debate, which Trump has threatened not to attend — if he can manage to make his grandest plan happen.
President Trump previously suggested he may skip the first GOP primary debates.
Will President Trump participate in sham establishment debates? pic.twitter.com/ceUUHqxHR0
— WeLoveTrump (@WeLovePresTrump) April 25, 2023
Although Carlson's contract with Fox News reportedly doesn't end until 2024, sources close to the political commentator said he may accept less money than he's owed to get back into media at an earlier time.
Cont. from The Washington Post:
Carlson and his team have discussed the possibility of moderating a candidate forum outside of the traditional protocols surrounding the GOP primary debate system, according to two people familiar with the considerations. These people said the setup — as well as Carlson’s availability to take on that kind of role, given the noncompete constraints of his contract with Fox — remain unclear. But Carlson has personally expressed enthusiasm about the idea, according to people familiar with his comments. At least one major candidate — Trump — has told Carlson he’s interested, according to a person familiar with the exchange.
The former Fox host’s interest in a debate is said to stem in part from its potential to loosen the Republican National Committee’s grip on the process, as well as to challenge the role traditionally played by the major television networks. “He could go straight to the candidates, stream it live, invite the networks but maintain control over the process,” said one person familiar with the discussions, speaking on the condition of anonymity to preserve relationships.
Carlson has been approached in recent days by candidates as well as Republican fundraisers about appearing on the campaign trail but is interested in maintaining a more independent posture, according to people with knowledge of his views. A role moderating a debate or delivering analysis about the contest is seen as a way to influence the process without becoming an arm of a particular campaign.