MSNBC Analyst Says Tucker Carlson Uses ‘White Nationalist Rhetoric’ and ‘Basically Supports Terrorism’
MSNBC political analyst Jason Johnson fired off a heated accusation against Tucker Carlson, accusing the Fox News primetime host of spreading “white nationalist rhetoric” that “basically supports terrorism.”
Speaking with MSNBC host Chris Hayes, Johnson, who is also a professor of political science at Morgan State University and politics editor at The Root, took aim at the recent comments by Carlson dismissing as a “hoax” the rising threat from white supremacy, in the aftermath of a El Paso shooting.
“I see Tucker Carlson as a guy who has repeatedly failed in television. Who has been basically given media welfare, a primetime spot and he is still being promoted not because he is good at his job, but because he promotes a certain kind of bigotry that other people can’t say as eloquently,” Johnson said. “What do we do with that as a society? Do we constantly call him out for it or pretend he is actually just an entertainer?”
Hayes then noted the similarities between Carlson’s often nativist and anti-immigrant rhetoric and that of President Donald Trump, who infamously kicked off his campaign in 2015 by saying Mexico is sending “rapists” into the country.
“People reacted. But then it was ‘Oh, wow, there is just enough people that like this that he is going to keep going,” Hayes said, before linking Trump to the president’s favorite cable channel, Fox News. “That’s basically the same issue with Trump TV.”
“There are still people who want to watch that kind of nonsense,” Johnson responded, zeroing in on Carlson. “For the rest of news the media system, for everybody everybody else who is talking about it, we have to now frame this is as this is someone who basically supports terrorism. This is someone who is disingenuous. If you’re talking about this white nationalist rhetoric, you can’t support white nationalist rhetoric without supporting terrorism. I think he should be framed in that way.”
Hayes, for his part, balked at the idea of claiming Carlson’s xenophobic coverage amounted to de facto support for political violence.
“I don’t know if that’s true. I don’t know if I agree with that, I really don’t,” Hayes replied, clearly treading carefully around Johnson’s incendiary claim. “I think supporting terrorism is distinct from sort of supporting the predicate for what has happened, right? There are people who can be, have violent ideologies who don’t support violence, or maybe that’s not possible.”
Johnson disagreed, and doubled down, claiming that you cannot disentangle support for a white ethno-state in America and the state violence that would be required to bring it about.
“You can’t support white nationalists without supporting terrorism, because you can’t support white nationalism without state sponsored or individual violence,” Johnson said. “You can’t. It requires moving people from a country they have always been at. That’s terrorism.”
Watch the video above, via MSNBC.
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