Canned Juan Williams Gets $2M Fox News Contract
Ex-NPR analyst signs 3-year deal, still furious over firing
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 22, 2010 2:44 AM CDT
Updated Oct 22, 2010 5:00 AM CDT
News analyst Juan Williams appears on the "Fox & Friends" television program in New York yesterday.   (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

(Newser) – Getting fired from NPR is working out pretty well for Juan Williams. Fox News has offered the analyst a new three-year, $2 million contract, the Los Angeles Times reports. Williams—canned for telling Fox's O'Reilly Factor that people in Muslim garb on planes make him nervous—will have an expanded role at the Fox network and will write a column for Williams, who was already a Fox News contributor, stands by his remarks.

"Juan has been a staunch defender of liberal viewpoints since his tenure began at Fox News in 1997," Fox chief executive Roger Ailes said, adding a not-too-subtle dig at NPR: “He’s an honest man whose freedom of speech is protected by Fox News on a daily basis." Conservatives including Sarah Palin, Newt Gingrich, and Mike Huckabee have attacked NPR over the controversy, with Gingrich saying the government should pull its funding of NPR. Williams is furious about the firing. He called it a "chilling assault on free speech" and said that NPR's actions were worse than Richard Nixon's treatment of the press. For more on that, click here.