Far-right Fox News host has repeatedly stood up for authoritarians domestically and abroad. He's repeatedly defended the insurrectionists who stormed the United States Capitol in hopes of overthrowing the results of the 2020 election. In 2019, when Trump was facing impeachment for pressuring Ukraine's President to open an investigation into the Bidens in order to receive congressionally approved military aid, Carlson bragged that he was rooting for Russia against the fledgling democratic nation.
And now, as tensions escalate between Russia and Ukraine again, Carlson has resumed his penchant for praising authoritarians to millions of viewers.
The host was responding to recent sanctions implemented by the Biden administration after Putin recognized Luhansk and Donetsk—two pro-Russia separatist regions of Ukraine—as independent nations and began sending troops there, a move Biden said was "the beginning of an invasion."
Watch Carlson's defense below.
"Why do I hate Putin so much? Has Putin ever called me a racist? Has he threatened to get me fired for disagreeing with him? Has he shipped every middle class job in my town to Russia? Did he manufacture a worldwide pandemic that wrecked my business and kept me indoors for two years? Is he teaching my children to embrace racial discrimination? Is he making fentanyl? Is he trying to snuff out Christianity? Does he eat dogs? These are fair questions, and the answer to all of them is no. Vladimir Putin didn't do any of that."
Carlson's lie-ridden rhetorical questions suggested that American democrats were a greater threat to the nation than Putin's expansion into Europe, even though Carlson's broadcast itself is proof that racist diatribes don't universally result in job losses. Not to mention, there's no proof that COVID-19—which has killed nearly a million Americans and which Carlson has minimized—was deliberately manufactured. Oh, and the claim that children are being taught racial discrimination by learning unvarnished histories of America's past doesn't hold up to scrutiny either.
What's more, while Putin's direct influence on Americans may be scant from five thousand miles away, Russian dissidents and journalists know all too well the dangers posed by the Kremlin's regime. Multiple critics of Putin have died in violent or suspicious ways. Last year, experts determined that Russian agents were behind the poisoning of Russian dissident Alexei Navalny.
Then there's Putin's efforts to suppress democracy in Russia and elsewhere. At home, Putin stays in power through corrupt elections. Putin also guided efforts to interfere with the 2016 presidential election in the United States through coordinated social media disinformation campaigns. It's undetermined what effect these disinformation campaigns had on the actual outcome, but they undoubtedly contributed to the sense of divisiveness and distrust that have informed rhetoric like Carlson's for the past six years.
People didn't hold back in their responses to Carlson.
Others pointed out that Carlson's argument could be suited to defend even the world's most evil or murderous people.
Sure enough, recent polling has revealed that Republican voters now favor Putin more than leading Democrats in America.