‘I hate him passionately’: Tucker Carlson’s true feelings on Donald Trump revealed in texts

Click to play video: 'Fox News under fire in Dominion Voting Systems lawsuit'
Fox News under fire in Dominion Voting Systems lawsuit
WATCH ABOVE: The inner turmoil at Fox News is being exposed in a multi-billion-dollar lawsuit from Dominion Voting Systems. The voting machine company is suing the network for repeating former U.S. president Donald Trump's lie about the 2020 election being fraudulent. Jackson Proskow has the embarrassing details on the text messages revealing what Fox host Tucker Carlson really thinks of Trump, and how Republicans are slamming Carlson's coverage of the January 6, 2021 Capitol riots – Mar 9, 2023

Just two days before the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riot, Fox News host Tucker Carlson said his patience for former U.S. president Donald Trump had worn thin.

Numerous text messages from Carlson disparaging Trump were revealed on Tuesday amid hundreds of pages of newly unsealed court filings in the US$1.6 billion defamation lawsuit filed against Fox News by Dominion Voting Systems.

One such text to an unnamed colleague on Jan. 4, 2021, shows Carlson say of Trump: “I hate him passionately. … I can’t handle much more of this.”

Dominion, an electronic voting company, is suing Fox News for allegedly damaging both the brand and American institutions by promoting false claims of election rigging to the broadcaster’s audience of millions following the 2020 U.S. election. Among other claims, Fox News wrongfully reported that Dominion’s equipment was used to fraudulently swing the election results in favour of President Joe Biden.

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Fox News has denied any defamation and has in turn accused the voting firm of dishonesty.

“Thanks to today’s filings, Dominion has been caught red-handed using more distortions and misinformation in their PR campaign to smear FOX News and trample on free speech and freedom of the press,” a statement from Fox News reads. “We already know they will say and do anything to try to win this case, but to twist and even misattribute quotes to the highest levels of our company is truly beyond the pale.”

Carlson, a staunch conservative political commentator, has regularly praised Trump on Fox News and is accused of further spreading misinformation and conspiracy on his self-titled TV program. The new legal documents cast doubt on Carlson’s seemingly strong support for Trump and paint a contrasting image of him behind closed doors.

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“We are very, very close to being able to ignore Trump most nights,” Carlson wrote in another text. “I truly can’t wait.”

The alleged text messages about Trump continued: “What he’s good at is destroying things. He’s the undisputed world champion of that. He could easily destroy us if we play it wrong.”

“That’s the last four years,” Carlson wrote of Trump’s presidency. “We’re all pretending we’ve got a lot to show for it, because admitting what a disaster it’s been is too tough to digest. But come on. There isn’t really an upside to Trump.”

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Alongside Carlson, other high-profile Fox News personalities and executives have also had their less-than-faithful messages about Trump and his allies revealed within the defamation lawsuit. Laura Ingraham, also a Fox News host, called Sidney Powell a “complete nut” despite lauding her during broadcasts.

“No one will work with her. Ditto with Rudy (Giuliani),” Ingraham wrote.

Further legal documents have revealed even Rupert Murdoch, the owner of Fox News, said Ingraham and Fox News host Sean Hannity maybe “went too far” in their untrue claims of election fraud.

Tucker Carlson spins U.S. Capitol raid footage

On Monday, shortly before the text messages were published publicly, The Tucker Carlson Show broadcast security footage from inside the Capitol building on Jan. 6, 2021.

U.S. House speaker, Kevin McCarthy provided Carlson and Fox News with some 41,000 hours of video from inside the deadly riot that left five people dead in its aftermath.

Republicans are now trying to claw back the findings of the House Jan. 6 investigation, which painstakingly documented, with testimony and video evidence, how Trump rallied his supporters to head to the Capitol and “fight like hell” as Congress was certifying his loss to Democrat Biden. McCarthy has remained steadfast in his decision to give Fox News the footage despite intense criticism, saying people can watch and “come up with their own conclusion.”

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In the 30-minute segment on Monday, Carlson misrepresented the footage to make the raid seem “peaceful” in nature. He emphasized imagery of the invaders, some in combat gear and wielding flagpoles, merely milling about the gilded halls, taking pictures of the surroundings during pauses in the hours-long attack.

“These were not insurrectionists. They were sightseers,” Carlson said on Monday.

Similarly positioned footage from Jan. 6 was also aired on Fox News on Tuesday.

Democrats, Senate Republicans and the chief of Capitol police — as well as family members of those killed as a result of the Jan. 6 riot — have condemned Carlson and Fox News for spinning the footage.

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More than half of the roughly 1,000 people charged with Capitol riot-related federal crimes have pleaded guilty, including more than 130 who pleaded guilty to felony crimes, according to an Associated Press tally.

Trump on Tuesday contended that Carlson’s presentation was “irrefutable” evidence that rioters have been wrongly accused of crimes and he thanked the host and the speaker for their work. Carlson praised McCarthy as having “rectified” the official record.

The undertaking by Fox News comes as Trump is again gearing up to run for president in 2024.

— With files from the Associated Press

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