Chris Wallace undoubtedly surprised viewers over the weekend when he announced that he was immediately departing the network, and that Sunday’s episode of Fox News Sunday would be the last with him at the helm.
This week, The Hill, and other left-leaning outlets, insisted that Wallace’s departure from Fox News was a troubling sign for the highest-rated news network, citing the loss of what they described as one of Fox’s “most trusted journalists.”
While the idea of Fox News hurting after losing Wallace is likely hilarious to many, as Wallace was probably the most despised anchor at Fox by a vast majority of the network’s viewers, The Hill added context to the claim by pointing to concerns that without anchors like Wallace, the network would be dominated by right-leaning opinion hosts.
Frank Sesno, former director of the School of Media and Public Affairs at George Washington University, explained what he believes will happen as a result of Wallace’s exit, admitting that he believes most Fox News viewers won’t mind not ever seeing Wallace again.
“It means that [Fox has] lost a very important and significant part of their brand, but it may be a part of their brand that has fallen out of favor with a large part of their audience,” Sesno said.
Sesno added: “His presence gave Fox News some cover to say it was doing some legit journalism and giving everyone a run for their money. His departure deprives them of that.”
While he’s not wrong in the sense that Wallace was one of the network’s left-leaning hosts to sort of balance out the rest of the conservative lineup on the network, it’s extremely doubtful that Fox News brass, or its viewers, give a rip whatsoever, as the ratings of its opinion programs are significantly greater than hard news shows.
Fox News viewers, by and large, aren’t tuning in to see Wallace, just like they didn’t tune in to see Shepard Smith. They tune in to see Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham and others who aren’t afraid to go after the Biden administration at a time when it’s needed more than ever, especially since the White House enjoys a perpetual shield from the liberal mainstream media.
Wallace’s void will reportedly be filled by a rotating list of other neutral Fox hosts, like Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum.