Fox News’ Tucker Carlson on Thursday night called out President Donald Trump after he ‘recklessly encouraged’ his supporters to invade the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday sparking violence that has resulted in five fatalities.
Carlson, a Trump ally who has spent the majority of his presidential term praising and protecting him, claimed that the president has now reached the end of his ‘shelf life’ and it was ‘not healthy’ for the nation to continue being ‘focused on a single man’.
The Fox host added that Trump has now reached his ‘expiration date’ and questioned whether the president is ‘worth all of this time and attention’.
However, Carlson did continue to defend the actions of Trump’s loyalists, despite Wednesday’s violent scenes, as he blasted the Republican party for not caring about the president’s base and taunted them for having spent too long defending the ‘personal reputations of its leaders’.
He claimed that the storming of the Capitol yesterday was simply a ‘political protest’ that ‘got out of hand’.
His comments came as the Wall Street Journal, which like Fox is owned by Rupert Murdoch, called on Trump to resign before he is impeached in an abrupt about-turn from the paper.
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Fox News’ Tucker Carlson on Thursday night called out President Donald Trump after he ‘recklessly encouraged’ his supporters to invade the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday
Carlson said the president was ‘wrong’ to encourage his supporters to descend on the Capitol during his speech at Wednesday morning’s rally, pictured above
Five died in the violent storming of the Capitol on Wednesday, pictured above
Tucker Carlson describes the MAGA riot at the Capitol that Trump incited as a “political protest [that] got out of hand after the president recklessly encouraged it” and roundly dismisses calling it “insurrection” or “domestic terrorism.” pic.twitter.com/YfhdVbsncl
— Justin Baragona (@justinbaragona) January 8, 2021
Carlson has continued to defend President Trump in the past few weeks even as his chances of overturning the election became less and less likely and no evidence of widespread fraud was unearthed.
Yet, he appeared to jump ship on Thursday night, while saying he still supported the president’s base in claiming that the Democrats were using Wednesday’s events as a ‘pretext for an unprecedented crackdown on civil liberties’.
‘Just in the last several hours we have heard people in positions of power and authority demand that those who support Donald Trump should no longer be allowed to publish books or use the internet or fly on airplanes,’ he fumed.
‘What happened yesterday, they’re telling us, wasn’t simply that a political protest got out of hand after the president recklessly encouraged it, that is in fact what happened,’ Carlson continued, admitting the president was to blame.
He said that the effect on Trump’s presidency on the country ‘has been noticeable’.
‘We’ve gone from being this big continental country with an enormous span of concerns and interests to a sweaty chat room of 300 million people all of whom are focused on a single man, Donald Trump. That is not healthy no matter how you feel about Trump,’ Carlson said.
‘At some point you’ve got to wonder about where our country is putting all of its energy. Is any single president, anyone worth all of this time and attention? All politicians whether you agree with them or not come with a shelf life, they are people.
‘They don’t last forever, none of us do. In Trump’s case, the expiration date arrives in 13 days and after that he will not be president.’
Carlson still defended the hundreds of Trump loyalists who broke into the Capitol
The Fox host also claimed that the group was not racist. Pictured above, a supporter in the US Capitol Rotunda on Wednesday afternoon holding a Confederate flag
The crowds pictured went to the Capitol after listening to a Trump speech that morning
Carlson then claimed that he was not attacking Trump but criticized his actions in encouraging supporters to go to the U.S. Capitol building in his speech at the ‘Stop the Steal Rally’ on Wednesday morning, an action which the TV personality called ‘wrong’.
‘It was a political protest that got completely out of control, as we said before, because the president recklessly encouraged it and that is wrong,’ he continued.
During the opening segment of his show, Carlson also launched into a tirade against the Republican party and claimed that they don’t care about their voters or the American people.
‘Donald Trump thinks exclusively about Donald Trump but so does almost every single Democrat in congress as well as every single Republican. All of them is Trump obsessed,’ raged Carlson.
‘Who’s got your concerns top of mind? Who wakes up in the middle of the night about your family?’ he asked.
‘That’s the main thing we need to change. It won’t be easy, but the themes are pretty clear and here are the basics. The point of the Republican party is not to protect the personal reputations of its leaders. That cannot be the priority.
‘The point of the Republican party is to protect its voters. In practice that needs protecting the bill of rights, the most basic freedoms and bedrock promises of American life – without them you wouldn’t want to live here.’
He continued to state that the party could also not rely on one person as he encouraged his viewers to give up on the hope of Trump and claimed that ‘freedoms are more important than any single politician’.
Carlson accused the Republican party of not supporting Trump’s base. Pictured, a supporter of President Donald Trump chants outside the Senate Gallery inside the Capitol
‘Donald Trump could become immortal and win the next 40 presidential elections and his daughter the next 40 after that but if America becomes a place where you have to violate your own conscience in order to hold a job, we are not allowed to protect your family from mob violence, where your children can’t afford to get married and raise your grandchildren because employers don’t like their skin color, then what’s the point of all of this?’ Carlson questioned.
‘There is no point. No one wants to live in a place like that or should have to no matter who the president is. We should be very concerned about all of this right now; these are the core concerns,’ he continued.
‘Thirteen days from now, these voters will not have Donald Trump to protect them, they won’t have anyone unless the Republican party decides to wake up and push back against the lies and progress and acknowledge the purpose of those lies which is an unprecedented crackdown on the way you live.
‘You will have no chance either,’ he concluded.
Carlson also took issue with the Democratic reaction to yesterday’s events and claimed that the left is wrong for branding the actions of Trump supporters as racist and terrorism.
‘CNN describes it as an insurrection, Chuck Schumer likened it to Pearl Harbor, it was our generation’s 9/11 and, needless to say, it was ‘white supremacy’,’ he said.
‘They understand how to use language, not simply to describe what is happening, they use it to political ends. It wasn’t an insurrection, stop with the lying.’
While Carlson has remained a staunch Trump defender throughout most of his presidency, the Fox host has been criticized by some viewers for some instances of pushback to Trump’s actions over the past year.
Tucker Carlson has remained a staunch Trump defender throughout most of his presidency. Carlson and Trump are pictured together above during a 2020 interview
On June 2, Carlson had called on the president to do more as violence erupted in the early days of the protests over George Floyd’s deaths, and stated that he would not be reelected if he did not prove that he could protect the American people.
Just two weeks later, Carlson criticized the president again for not taking action to bring down the CHAZ occupied zone in Seattle after Trump said he was enjoying sitting back and watching the crime spree that erupted there.
After the election, Carlson faced high levels of backlash from Trump’s supporters after he called out the president’s attorney Sidney Powell for pushing conspiracy theories, with some viewers claiming they were abandoning Fox News as a result.
Another Trump ally at Fox Sean Hannity also acknowledged that Joe Biden would now become president in two weeks’ time as he questioned Thursday how the breach of the Capitol had happened and why law enforcement was not more prepared for the thousands who arrived to the rally.
On Thursday night, a Capitol police officer became the fifth fatality of Wednesday’s riots as Trump acknowledged that the election was lost and pleaded for calm.
‘Take responsibility and go away quietly’: Wall Street Journal editorial board calls on Donald Trump to RESIGN
The Wall Street Journal editorial board has called on Donald Trump to resign, in an abrupt severance of their previously accommodating position.
The paper, owned by Rupert Murdoch, has been more tolerant of the president than some of their rivals.
But on Thursday night they knifed him, telling him he needed to leave before he was impeached.
‘If Mr. Trump wants to avoid a second impeachment, his best path would be to take personal responsibility and resign,’ they wrote.
‘This would be the cleanest solution since it would immediately turn presidential duties over to Mr. Pence.
The WSJ editorial board on Thursday night published a damning indictment of Trump’s actions
‘And it would give Mr. Trump agency, a la Richard Nixon, over his own fate.’
‘It is best for everyone, himself included, if he goes away quietly,’ the paper’s team wrote.
Murdoch-owned press – Fox News, The Wall Street Journal and New York Post, among them – was initially supportive of the president, but have grown increasingly tired of his antics.
Fox News was the first to call Arizona for Joe Biden – a move which so enraged Trump he forced his son-in-law Jared Kushner to phone Murdoch directly and demand a retraction. Murdoch refused, and since then Trump has been urging his supporters to abandon Fox News and switch the the fringe stations Newsmax and OAN.
Thursday’s statement from the WSJ board, however, marks the most dramatic shift in the Murdoch stable’s approach so far.