Fox News host Tucker Carlson fumed on Thursday night over other media outlets accurately describing the pro-Trump U.S. Capitol riot as an “insurrection,” claiming it was nothing more than a “political protest that got out of hand” while conceding that President Donald Trump “recklessly encouraged” it.
At the top of his primetime program Thursday night, the far-right Fox News star appeared to place some distance between himself and the outgoing president, noting that all politicians have a “shelf life” and in Trump’s case, “the expiration date arrives in 13 days.”
While preparing his audience for the reality that Trump will no longer be in office in two weeks—something the president finally acknowledged for the first time on Thursday—Carlson loudly complained about the way the media has painted the mob of thousands of MAGA followers who stormed the Capitol to stop Congress from certifying Joe Biden’s election victory.
Claiming political elites will use the deadly riot to “crack down on civil liberties,” Carlson then insisted that in order to justify their action “they are relying on lies and hysteria.”
“What happened yesterday wasn’t simply that a political protest got out of hand after the president recklessly encouraged it—that is, in fact, what happened but it’s not what they are saying,” Carlson declared. “Instead they are calling it domestic 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.’”
Despite the prevalence of Confederate flags and other neo-Nazi paraphernalia among the MAGA mob, Carlson grumbled that some were describing the riot as having racist elements, adding: “There was nothing racist about it!”
Devoting a later segment to CNN reporters describing Wednesday’s incident as a “deadly insurrection,” Carlson blasted the network while once again painting the Capitol riot as a gathering that just got a bit overheated.
“They understand how to use language, not simply to describe what is happening, they use it to political ends,” he grumbled. “The insurrection at the U.S. Capitol wasn't an insurrection, 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.”
“It wasn’t an insurrection, stop with the lying,” he concluded.
Following the insurrection that wasn't an insurrection, per Carlson, several Trump Cabinet members have resigned, multiple Republican senators pulled back their objections to Biden’s election, and even some Republicans have joined Democrats in calling for Trump to be removed from office.