DES MOINES, Iowa — Tucker Carlson, Fox News host and supporter of the racist “replacement” theory, brought his well-known message that the “ruling class” wants to manipulate ordinary Americans to a high-profile stop Friday at the Republican presidential nominating circuit.
In 42 minutes of meandering commentary with frequent tangents to attack his favored targets and punctuated with his trademark laugh, Carlson didn’t suggest he would run for the White House, but he did tell a conservative Christian audience what to avoid when deciding on a Republican candidate.
“You have to be very careful with candidates who care what The New York Times thinks,” he told the 1,800 seated across from him.
She used former UN ambassador Nikki Haley as an example after the police killing of George Floyd, when she posted a tweet saying the black man’s death was “personal and painful” for her and that healing would require that what happened to continuation was “personal and painful” for everyone.
“And of course what happened next was personal and painful for everyone. Our cities burned. A lot of people died,” he said. “And I thought, why should what happened between a police officer and George Floyd outside a convenience store in Minneapolis have to be personal and painful for someone else? What are you talking about?”
“You’re trying to please the people whose opinions really matter to you at The New York Times,” he added.
Carlson ridiculed concern about climate change: “Get your stupid wind turbines out of there and go back to New York!” ― Transgender supporters, and those, like Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, who say Ukraine’s defeat of Russian dictator Vladimir Putin is a primary foreign policy goal.
“I am not a supporter of Putin, despite what you may have heard,” he said, then mocked that criticism again later. “Putin, Putin, Putin, Putin, Putin!”
Carlson often returned to a theme he frequently touches on his late-night show, where he portrays the issues as struggles between the “ruling class” and their viewers, and did so again with companies that have instituted policies to pay for employee departures. . -of-state travel to seek an abortion, which she said was simply part of her effort to discourage having families.
“That is the sickest message I can imagine. That is totalitarianism, by the way,” she said. “By the way, if life expectancy falls, if fertility rates fall, if testosterone levels fall, sperm levels fall, all of which have, by margins unprecedented in American history, and nobody he realizes?
Carlson had a table outside the auditorium at the Iowa Events Center, where his staff sold Tucker Carlson baseball caps for $30, metal water bottles for $20 and bumper stickers for $2. A staffer said he didn’t know if Carlson was running for president, but said he would relay the HuffPost query.
Although his name has been in Republican circles for several years as a potential 2024 candidate who would enjoy near-universal name recognition and strong approval among Republican primary voters, Carlson said in a recent interview that he had no interest in The presidency.
However, his appearance at the event on Friday may have sent the opposite message, with his own Twitter account. destiny: “As the 2024 race heats up, Tucker heads to Iowa for an event known for helping choose presidential candidates.”
During its 11 years of existence, the Family Leader summer event has become a high-profile destination for Republican presidential hopefuls. Last year’s summit, for example, drew former Vice President Mike Pence, former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem.
The 2014 summit, which took place at the same point in the 2016 cycle, featured Rick Perry, Ted Cruz, Bobby Jindal and Mike Huckabee, all four of whom ended up vying for the 2016 Republican nomination.
And the 2015 summit, which again had a full slate of presidential candidates, was where reality show host Donald Trump said that Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) was considered a hero only because he had been captured during the War. from Vietnam. and he spent six years as a prisoner, but that Trump preferred heroes who were not captured.
The decision to invite Carlson came after Family Leader President Bob Vander Plaats heard him speak at last year’s funeral for Foster Friess, a veteran Republican donor who almost single-handedly kept the 2012 presidential campaign alive. Rick Santorum for months through millions of dollars in super PAC. donations for former senator from Pennsylvania.
Carlson has the highest-rated cable news show in the country, having filled the slot vacated by former Fox News star Bill O’Reilly, who was ousted after a sexual harassment scandal.
His show promotes themes popular in Donald Trump’s wing of the Republican Party, in particular the “great replacement theory” that the country’s changing demographics is actually an insidious plot by wealthy Jewish financier George Soros and other “elites” to transform radically the demographics of America.
On Friday, while Carlson appeared to be popular with most attendees, many had not previously thought of him as a presidential candidate.
“I would need to know more about him,” said Lori Knudsen, a 66-year-old retired kindergarten teacher from Harlan, in the southwestern part of the state. “He has great moral values.”
Jennifer Morris, 52, a real estate agent from Minnetonka, Minn., who traveled to Des Moines for the conference, said she would love for Carlson to show up. “If Tucker was going to run, I would vote for him in a second. I wish he would, but he probably won’t. He has a nice life.”
Carlson closed the day-long conference, which early Friday featured Christian music, speeches by pastors and an anti-abortion doctor who urged the audience to continue fighting abortion rights now that the Supreme Court has returned the issue to the states.
However, the lineup changed after lunch, beginning with a preview of a demonic possession movie by Iowa radio talk show host Steve Deace and followed by Iowa Republican political figures, including Governor Kim Reynolds and the Senator Chuck Grassley.