TUCKER CARLSON: Bill O'Reilly set a 'high bar'

Tucker Carlson@FoxNews/TwitterTucker Carlson.

Fox News host Tucker Carlson made his debut in Bill O’Reilly’s 8 p.m. time slot on Monday by tipping a proverbial hat to the host who was abruptly fired just a few days earlier.

“For those of you tuning in … expecting to see someone different in this anchor chair, I know the feeling well,” Carlson said at the beginning of “Tucker Carlson Tonight.”

“I watched Bill O’Reilly at this hour for years, and I always marveled at how well prepared he was, how tough he was, and how crisply and directly he expressed his views,” continued Carlson.

Carlson moved up to O’Reilly’s 8 p.m. time slot after 21st Century Fox announced last week that O’Reilly would not return. In doing so, Carlson took the place of what was Fox News Channel’s most popular primetime program, “The O’Reilly Factor,” which recently had its highest-rated first quarter in its history, with an average of nearly four million viewers each show, according to Nielsen.

“What O’Reilly did was not easy — He set a high bar and I’m going to do my best to meet it,” Carlson continued.

Carlson last Friday delivered a farewell address to viewers of his previous time slot: “For 20 years, you’ve trusted Bill O’Reilly to be straight with you, to tell you what others wont tell you,” he said on his last show. “We hope to earn that same trust — we’re going to try as hard as we can. “

You can watch the clip here »

We’re moving to 8pm ET. A famous time slot. For 20 years you have trusted Bill O’Reilly to be straight with you. We hope to earn that trust. pic.twitter.com/5w46yPVUUz
— Tucker Carlson (@TuckerCarlson) April 22, 2017

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