"Recently, I asked the company to allow me to leave Fox News", Smith said to his audience at the end of his regular broadcast, Shepard Smith Reporting. Smith recently took Carlson to task for allowing a commentator on Tucker Carlson Tonight to call Fox New legal analyst Andrew Napolitano "a fool" for saying on air that Trump's conduct in the Ukraine scandal is criminal.
While Smith was far from being the highest rated personality on Fox News, his straight-ahead approach to stories that often contradicted what viewers heard from its conservative commentators in prime time was a major source of credibility for the network. In what could be seen as a veiled reference to Trump's attacks, Smith said he aimed to "speak truth to power, without fear or favor, in context and with perspective".
Smith, 55, said he is not retiring, although his agreement with Fox will forbid him from working elsewhere "at least in the near future".More news: Reported Sexually Transmitted Diseases Reach Epidemic levels in California
A longtime and well-regarded Fox News anchor is stepping down.
Wallace continued: "We are proud of the signature reporting and anchoring style he honed at Fox News, along with everything he accomplished here during his monumental 23-year tenure". Hannity called Smith "clueless" and Ingraham said he was "inconsiderate" after Smith made comments critical of the channel's opinion bloc.
"Is he leaving? Oh that's a shame!" the president said to reporters. At the time, Smith said the opinion division at Fox doesn't "really have rules" and that some of the programming "is there strictly to be entertaining".More news: GM Boosts Contract Offer
"Even in our now polarized nation, it's my hope that the facts will win the day, that the truth will always matter, that journalism and journalists will thrive", he said.
Smith's criticism of Trump dates to the beginning of Trump's presidency.
Smith's departure also comes one day after Attorney General William Barr met privately with media mogul Rupert Murdoch, founder of Fox News. "You have been a voice of reason on Fox, which I hate [to] watch apart from you, who I watch because I like your heart - it is large and good".More news: Advance voting is now open across Metro Vancouver
Smith quickly drew praise from colleagues and competitors on Twitter.
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