LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Joel Cheatwood, a senior Fox News executive who Beck hired away to his own company, will serve as the main liaison between the two networks. Both Beck and Fox News have been hinting that a split could be forthcoming.

The New York Times reported that Fox News was "contemplating life without" Beck. Later that month, Beck told his radio listeners that, no matter what happened, they would "continue to find each other."

The announcement ended months of speculation about whether or not Beck would continue his Fox News show when his contract was up in December. While Beck drew high ratings and huge attention to his time slot and to the channel, he has also drawn frequent criticism for some of his most controversial statements, causing widely-reported tension behind the scenes at the network. Over 400 advertisers also stopped airing their commercials on Fox News during Beck's hour.

Beck's television show allowed him to increase his profile substantially. In addition, Beck has a very large media empire of his own to fall back on. His radio show is the third-highest rated in the country and he has written many best-selling books. His large and devoted fan base read his Web sites and subscribe to his online "Insider Extreme" service. Forbes magazine estimated that Beck made $32 million last year . only $2 million of which came from Fox News.

In the official press release announcing the departure, Beck tries to make his departure as graceful as possible.

"Roger Ailes, Chairman and CEO of FOX News said, 'Glenn Beck is a powerful communicator, a creative entrepreneur and a true success by anybody's standards. I look forward to continuing to work with him.'
"Glenn Beck said, 'I truly believe that America owes a lot to Roger Ailes and FOX News. I cannot repay Roger for the lessons I've learned and will continue to learn from him and I look forward to starting this new phase of our partnership.'"