This Tucker Carlson Monologue Was Reportedly a ‘Turning Point’ In Trump Finally Taking Coronavirus Seriously
A monologue from Fox News host Tucker Carlson was “a turning point” in President Donald Trump finally taking the coronavirus seriously, according to a new report from the Washington Post.
The Post’s Robert Costa, reporting on divides within the conservative movement over how severe the coronavirus pandemic really is, details how Trump “suddenly and markedly recalibrated his own approach, after weeks of blasé comments about the virus that spurred some of his allies to dismiss the danger of the pandemic.”
A “turning point for Trump,” Rucker reports, came last week when Carlson emphasized the reality of the crisis on his primetime show.
On his March 9 show, Carlson warned “the Chinese coronavirus epidemic” will cause “economic damage whose effects will dog us for years.”
“People you know will get sick, some may die. This is real,” he said. “People you trust, people you probably voted for, have spent weeks minimizing what is clearly a very serious problem.”
The monologue was remarkable at its time — Mediaite covered Carlson’s comments here and contrasted them with Sean Hannity’s in our Green Room — because it came when almost every other opinion host on Fox News and Fox Business was downplaying the crisis or casting it as a political attack on the president.
Carlson did not call out Trump by name. That’s obviously by design, Carlson has an audience he’d rather not offend. But it also certainly helped to tip-toe around the sensitivities of his most sensitive viewer: Donald Trump.
“Carlson’s riff caught Trump’s attention and was one of the factors that led the president to start to reconsider his position, according to two White House officials who requested anonymity to speak frankly,” Rucker reports.
This revelation comes after the New York Times reported that Carlson ventured to Mar-a-Lago to urge Trump to take the coronavirus seriously in person.
Watch above, via Fox News.
Correction: This story initially credited the Washington Post report to Phil Rucker. It was written by Robert Costa. Mediaite apologizes for the error.
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