Tucker Carlson had Newsweek’s Kurt Eichenwald on his show today and, from the very start, the interview seemed to go off the rails. Carlson asked Eichenwald if he considered himself a journalist which caused Eichenwald to laugh and quip, “When did you stop beating your wife?”
Things really never got any better. Carlson confronted Eichenwald with a series of his own tweets until the author became irritated. “Hold on, hold on here, Tucker,” Eichenwald interrupted. “One of the things I want to make sure of, you have a real habit of taking a lot of things out of context,” he said. “If you’re going to talk about a tweet, let’s talk about a tweet. Give me what it says and we can talk about it,” he continued.
“Okay, do you want me to read some of your tweets?” Carlson asked. “Read me one,” Eichenwald agreed. This seemed promising but was immediately followed by more disagreement and crosstalk. “Here, you know what, let’s play the game another way,” Eichenwald announced. He then produced a prop binder the cover of which read “Tucker Carlson falsehoods.”
Eventually, Carlson did manage to ask about a tweet Eichenwald had sent out before the election alleging Trump had been institutionalized in a mental hospital in the 1990s. Here it is:
Asked to explain this, Eichenwald’s response went on for a full minute before he finally got to this caveat, “now let me say I’m talking about reporting process, so I’m saying here is what I was told.” At this point Carlson jumped in, “Was he in a mental hospital or not?”
What follows is three more minutes of Carlson asking Eichenwald to answer the question (“Was he in a mental hospital or not?”) and Eichenwald claiming Carlson is trying to prevent him from answering. Finally, Carlson has had enough. “Can you stop this is not interesting,” he says. “No, Tucker, I am not allowing you to make an accusation and then not allow me to answer,” Eichenwald replied.
Nearly eight minutes into the interview, Eichenwald still has not answered the question about his tweet. “How about this,” Carlson says, “I’m going to give you 30 seconds to answer this question ‘Do you have evidence that he was institutionalized in a mental hospital in 1990?’ Thirty seconds.”
Instead of answering, Eichenwald begins talking about the CIA. This goes on for a full minute before Carlson cuts him off adding, “I don’t mean this in a cruel way, I would have real concerns if I were one of your editors.”
This is probably the least productive, most entertaining interview you’ll see for some time. It’s an instant classic.