Tucker Carlson has slammed CNN for firing three employees for going into work without being vaccinated – and demanded to know how the network found out about their vaccination status.
The FOX News host hit out at the network for dismissing the three staffers – who have not been named – while still employing Jeffrey Toobin, a legal analyst for the network who was caught masturbating on a Zoom call with former colleagues at The New Yorker in October.
‘We just learned that being unvaccinated is a far more serious offense than, let’s say, masturbating on a video call with your co-workers or lying about Russian collusion,’ Carlson said on his show Friday night.
‘We know that from an internal memo the head of the network, Jeff Zucker, just sent to employees.’
In the internal memo, which was first obtained by New York Times’ media correspondent Michael Grynbaum on Thursday, Zucker told his employees: ‘In the past week, we have been made aware of three employees who were coming to the office unvaccinated. All three have been terminated.
‘Let me be clear – we have a zero-tolerance policy on this.’
FOX News host Tucker Carlson tore into CNN in his episode on Friday for firing three employees who were not vaccinated against the coronavirus
WarnerMedia Chairman Jeff Zucker sent CNN employees a memo on Thursday telling them the three employees had been terminated as CNN has a ‘zero-tolerance policy on this’
Carlson said: ‘A few questions remain here. ‘Who are these three employees who were fired from CNN? Clearly they’re not CNN anchors.
‘We know that one of CNN’s primetime anchors exposed others to COVID when he was infected with it last winter – he’s still there,’ Carlson said, seeming to refer to anchor Chris Cuomo.
‘Are they high-level people or are they more likely studio technicians, potentially African-American studio technicians? And how did CNN learn about their vaccination status? What else do they know about people’s medical histories over there?’
CNN has a policy requiring its employees to get the COVID vaccine to return to work, Mediaite reports, while FOX News’ policy is that ‘fully-vaccinated individuals who have entered their vaccination status into Workday are not required to wear a mask or socially-distance while at work.’
Unvaccinated FOX News employees, though, ‘must continue to comply with all of FOX’s COVID-19 Prevention Guidelines, including social distancing and mask-wearing while at work unless an exception applies (e.g. they are alone in the office).’
The three fired CNN employees have not yet been named, Carlson said, but are welcome to be on his show.
Meanwhile, Jeffrey Toobin (pictured), a legal analyst for the network who was caught masturbating in a Zoom call with former colleagues at The New Yorker in October remains on the company’s payroll, Carlson pointed out in his show Friday
CNN’s policy requires all of its employees to get the COVID vaccine to return to work
But it’s not just CNN that is requiring its employees to be vaccinated against the coronavirus, Carlson notes.
Major technology companies like Microsoft, Facebook, Twitter, Google and Netflix are requiring their employees to be vaccinated against the coronavirus, with about one-third of the companies on the Fortune 500 list considering implementing similar mandates – though just 10 percent have put such mandates into effect so far.
Nationwide, some hospitals, universities, restaurants and bars have also started requiring vaccines.
In his episode Friday, Carlson pointed to one hospital in Houston that has a vaccine mandate in effect.
Back in late June, more than 150 workers at Houston Methodist were fired or resigned after refusing to comply with the company’s policy that requires staff to get COVID-19 shots.
‘So the question is why did health care workers need a mandate to get vaccinated?’ he asked. ‘Why wouldn’t they just get vaccinated?
‘They’re health care workers, they … know enough about medicine or COVID, but they chose not to get vaccinated – why did they make that choice? Why did you have to force them?’
He then asked civil rights attorney Harmeet Dhillon whether it is legal for employers to require their staff members to get a vaccination and terminate them if they do not, to which Dhillon replied: ‘This is a unique situation where the government is allowing private employers to fire people for the type of protected categories that would otherwise be respected in the law.
‘And you have to ask some questions about why it is that we’re treating someone’s vaccination status on an experimental vaccine differently than let’s say pregnancy, or having herpes or some other type of communicable disease.’
The United States Equal Opportunity Commission said in May that federal law does not prevent vaccine requirements.
And President Joe Biden announced last week that all federal employees and contractors must get vaccinated or put up with weekly testing and lose privileges such as official travel.
But in his episode Friday, Carlson warned viewers: ‘Obviously we’re in the middle of a moral panic, driven by politicians who are dividing us for their own power.
‘But if you face this, if your employer tries to force you to get medicine you don’t need and threatens to fire you if you don’t, our unsolicited advice is resist, threaten to sue, make a lot of noise, don’t go along with it.
‘You’re an American,’ he said. ‘You don’t have to.’
List of U.S. employers requiring workers to get vaccinated grows, as others offer incentives to encourage shots
Equinox, and its subsidiary SoulCycle
City of New York
Delta Air Lines (for new employees)
Saks Fifth Avenue
State of California
State of New York
United Airlines (for new employees)
The Washington Post Co.
OFFERING INCENTIVES FOR EMPLOYEES TO GET VACCINES:
ALDI groceries (Paid time off and adjusted hours to get vaccinated)
Amazon ($100 bonus for workers who show proof of vaccination on first day of employment)
Amtrak (two hours of bonus pay and excused absence)
American Airlines (additional paid vacation day in 2022 and a $50 bonus)
Bolthouse Farms ($500 bonus with proof of vaccination or if they get shot at on-site clinic)
Chobani (up to six hours of paid time off for employees to go get vaccinated)
Darden Restaurants, which owns Olive Garden (four hours of paid time off to cover both doses of the vaccine)
Dollar General (one-time stipend equal to four hours of paid time off)
Instacart ($25 stipend to in-store employees and independent contractors)
JBS USA and Pilgrim’s ($100 bonus)
Kroger ($100 bonus with proof of vaccination as well as $100 store credit and 1,000 fuel points for essential and frontline staffers)
Lidl ($200 bonus and scheduling flexibility for vaccination appointments)
McDonald’s (up to four hours of paid time off to get the vaccine)
Publix ($125 gift cards for employees who show proof of vaccination)
Starbucks (up to four hours of paid time off for vaccine dosage appointments)
Target (up to four hours of paid time off per vaccine dosage and a $30 reimbursement for using a Lyft to get to their appointment)
Trader Joe’s (additional two hours of pay for each dose and scheduling flexbility)