Ousted Fox host Todd Starnes implies people are trying to silence him over his beliefs, says Trump campaign offered him support

Todd Starnes

Citation Ceci Freed / Media Matters

In a recent radio interview, right-wing commentator Todd Starnes spoke about his departure from Fox News, implying that people are trying to silence him over his beliefs and saying that he will never “compromise" them. He also said he received messages of support from people in President Donald Trump’s campaign.

TheWrap reported on October 2 that Fox News had “ousted” Starnes from the network, where he had worked for 15 years. Starnes was most recently a host for Fox News Radio and Fox Nation, and he also frequently appeared on programs such as Fox & Friends and wrote pieces for FoxNews.com. He left a trail of toxic remarks, including about LGBTQ people, Muslims, and immigrants. In August, just a few weeks after the anti-Hispanic and anti-immigrant mass shooting in El Paso, Texas, Starnes compared immigrants to Nazis. The National Association of Hispanic Journalists singled out Starnes’ remarks as a reason it rescinded Fox News’ invitation to an organization conference and returned the network’s sponsorship money. 

More recently, Right Wing Watch documented that Starnes did an interview with right-wing pastor Robert Jeffress “where the two agreed that Democrats do not worship the Christian God and may, in fact, worship the demon god Moloch.” While some outlets have attributed Starnes’ departure to those September 30 remarks, TheWrap wrote that Fox News didn’t “elaborate on the reasons behind his departure. An individual with knowledge of the situation told TheWrap Starnes’ exit ‘was in the works well before Monday.’” As Right Wing Watch also noted, the Moloch comments “are among the tamer that he has made on the network.” Jeffress works for Fox News and his network employment status apparently hasn’t changed

In an October 3 radio interview on The Marc Cox Show, Starnes spoke about his departure from Fox News and said that he had a “great” run at Fox News but that “there are things that I just will not do and that is compromise my beliefs, ever. You know, I’m proud to be a conservative. I’m proud to be a Trump supporter. And I’m also proud to be a person of faith.” 

He later added: “I would never try to silence, you know, someone from the left. I mean, that’s their opinion. But that’s the kind of country we live in these days. And, you know, I report on these kinds of incidents all the time, never realized I was going to be one of them.” He then declined to say what the network specifically objected to, saying, “I really can’t talk about that part.” 

Starnes later said that he received “messages of support” from people including Fox News contributor Mike Huckabee, Jerry Falwell Jr., and “folks in the Trump campaign.”