Fox News host Tucker Carlson went full conspiracy theorist on Wednesday night, suggesting George Floyd’s death somehow proves that the insurrectionist Capitol riot is part of a liberal plot to change the “old order” of America.
Following the House impeachment managers’ harrowing arguments on Wednesday, which featured chilling never-before-seen security footage and audio detailing the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, Carlson kicked off his primetime program by thoroughly dismissing the evidence presented by Democrats.
Carlson, who has repeatedly portrayed the seditious riot incited by former President Donald Trump as just a “political protest that got out of hand,” first insisted that impeachment manager Rep. David Cicilline’s (D-RI) portrayal of the rioters as an “armed angry mob” was inaccurate.
“There are no reports to the rioters that day discharging weapons or threatening anyone with a gun so what is he talking about?” Carlson declared. “Apparently, he is referring to the death of Officer Brian Sicknick.”
Aside from Sicknick’s death, however, the Capitol Police officers’ union has said that roughly 140 officers were physically injured, some seriously, when thousands of Trump supporters stormed the Capitol, some wearing full tactical gear and utilizing shields, tasers, hockey sticks and other weapons. Pipe bombs, guns and ammunition were also found near the Capitol grounds.
Noting that initial reports that Sicknick was killed after he was hit with a fire extinguisher now appear to be untrue—investigators now think it could have been a reaction to a chemical irritant—Carlson then began weaving a tale that Democrats and the media purposely lied about the officer’s death to push an agenda.
“Streams of politicians, the same people months before had told us that cops were racist by definition, the same people praised Brian Sicknick as a hero,” he said. “They had finally found a police officer who served their political uses. Kamala Harris and her husband, for example, arrived to pay their respects, and as they did, they said not one thing about defunding police. But, in fact, the story they told was a lie. From beginning to end.”
Carlson, who Fox News lawyers have successfully argued in court should not be taken seriously, went on to say the circumstances around Sicknick’s death means the whole narrative around the riot should be questioned. Namely, that Trump had anything to do with inciting it at all.
Noting that there were reports that certain groups had pre-planned the attack, the Fox host wondered if the FBI, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and Capitol Police were perhaps responsible for the escalation of violence that day.
“The fed probably had paid informers in the ranks of the protesters,” he asserted. “One of the rioters we learned yesterday was a former FBI employee. Was he still on the FBI payroll? He wouldn’t the first. So if the authorities knew that violence might be coming to the Capitol, where was the necessary security? It wasn’t there.”
Claiming he wasn’t “going to speculate” what this all means, the far-right Fox News star did just that—and he took a giant leap to do so, bizarrely tying the insurrection to Floyd and the racial justice movement sparked by his death at the hands of a white Minneapolis police officer.
“The question is why would they lie about this?” Carlson rhetorically asked. “For an answer think back to last spring. Beginning on Memorial Day, B.L.M. and their sponsors in corporate America completely changed this country. They changed this country more in five months than it had changed in the previous 50 years.”
He continued: “How did they do that? They used the sad death of a man called George Floyd to up-end our society. Months later, we learned that the story they told us about George Floyd’s death was an utter lie.”
Insisting there “was no physical evidence that George Floyd was murdered” by Officer Derek Chauvin, who has been charged with second-degree murder, Carlson added that “the autopsy showed that George Floyd almost certainly died of a drug overdose, fentanyl.”
The Hennepin County medical examiner ruled Floyd’s death a homicide, claiming the cause of death as a “cardiopulmonary arrest complicating law enforcement subdual, restraint, and neck compression.” The examiner added that the drugs in Floyd’s system were among “significant conditions,” but did not say if they contributed to his death. An independent autopsy found Floyd died of “asphyxiation from sustained pressure” from Chauvin’s knee on his neck.
“But by that point, the facts didn’t matter. It was too late,” Carlson added. “Cities had been destroyed, along with the fabric of this country itself. Scores of people had been killed.”
“Democratic partisans used a carefully concocted myth, a lie, to bum-rush America into overturning the old order and handing them much more power,” the conservative host concluded. “It worked flawlessly. So why wouldn’t they do it again?”