Liberals usually decry or lampoon this outsized influence, and a cottage industry of groups and individuals — Media Matters chief among them — have built massive audiences tracing how the latest Fox & Friends thought bubble made its way to the Resolute Desk. But the mockery turned to strange new respect this week when, after BuzzFeed credited Carlson for yet another climbdown, the Fox host received heaps of confused praise for apparently helping avert a war.

“It’s like ashes in my mouth, but a sincere thank you,” tweeted journalist Helen Kennedy, while ethics lawyer Richard Painter said, “Even @TuckerCarlson acknowledges the truth: getting into a war with Iran is nuts.” Journalist Glenn Greenwald, a frequent Carlson guest and fellow skeptic of interventionist foreign policy, said the Fox host had offered “some of the most vehement & unflinching denunciations of Trump’s assassination attack on Iran of anyone in the media.”

Aides rationalize the Fox-to-Trump pipeline as a way for the president to break out of the liberal groupthink they say infects most mainstream media outlets.