In April, Tucker Carlson, the most popular show host in American news media, was unceremoniously fired from Fox News.
He has since taken to the platform “X,” formerly Twitter, to continue publishing his own program.
Last week, during the first Republican primary debates, Tucker posted an exclusive (softball) interview with former President Donald Trump.
The episode received 260 million “impressions” within the first day.
Although an “impression” on Twitter only counts as an appearance in someone’s feed, if only one-tenth of those impressions equated to one view, the viewership would still be 26 million people. In comparison, Tucker’s Fox News program, Tucker Carlson Tonight, averaged 3.25 million viewers in March 2023.
The exclusive interview with Trump was a master stroke by both figures. It allowed Donald Trump to get his message across in a long format without actually muddying himself on the debate stage. Meanwhile, Vivek Ramaswamy played, in effect, the role of Trump’s stand-in, but still won the debate in his own right.
Tucker walked away with incredible numbers, even if not as spectacular as the 230 million impressions would suggest.
Yesterday, RT reported that Tucker Carlson has “strongly” requested a meeting with Vladimir Putin, ostensibly to publish as an episode of his new program.
With all these developments, an attempt to decode the former Fox News host’s real role in the media landscape is akin to cracking a modern-day enigma.
Many laud Tucker as a rogue voice, fighting the establishment, using a microphone as a holy scepter.
It cannot be denied that on some critical issues like opposing escalation over Ukraine, Tucker Carlson’s voice is vitally important. But, Tucker Carlson has his own interests, and a background that does not suggest he is some populist hero, or an antiwar dove (of critical importance, he certainly is not on China).
That said, it would be immensely valuable for the West to see an intimate and honest one-on-one interview between Vladimir Putin and Western news media—one that was not intent on painting Putin as the new Hitler.
Maybe Tucker Carlson, though imperfect, is the figure best positioned to do it?
When America’s Commander-in-Chief, Joe Biden, still has not spoken with Putin since the February 2022 invasion, its puzzling that the job defaults to the United States’ most popular current events news host.
Exactly what does that mean—and what will come of it?
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