In case you may have missed it in the lead-up to Super Bowl weekend, on Friday, Fox News decided to cancel the Fox Business series Lou Dobbs Tonight.
“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,” a Fox News Media spokesperson said on Friday in a statement. “A new 5PM program will be announced in the near future.”
The decision to cancel Dobbs’ program came one day after voting technology company Smartmatic filed a $2.7 billion defamation lawsuit against Fox News Media. Smartmatic named Dobbs and his on-air colleagues Jeanine Pirro and Maria Bartiromo in that lawsuit.
Smartmatic has alleged that the hosts, as well as Trump personal attorneys Sidney Powell and Rudy Giuliani have spread lies and disinformation about Smartmatic’s role in the 2020 presidential election that have severely damaged its business and more generally, its reputation.
In response to that lawsuit, Fox News Media has said it is “proud of our 2020 election coverage and will vigorously defend this meritless lawsuit in court.”
Beginning today (Monday), Dobbs’ former show in the time slot will be named Fox Business Tonight. This week, FBN’s Jackie DeAngelis will substitute host the hour on Monday and Tuesday, while David Asman, who filled in for Dobbs on Friday, will front the hour on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Fox Business Tonight will then repeat at 7 p.m. ET.
So, what’s the plan after Friday? Will FBN stick with a different rotating host every couple of days, like what they’re doing this week, or will this end up being handled like Fox News’ 7 p.m. hour, where the network has a rotating host for an entire week? That remains to be seen.