On Sunday evening, the watchdog nonprofit Media Matters for America published a montage of misogynistic and otherwise creepy quotes from Fox News’ Tucker Carlson, the host of the network’s second most popular show. Between 2006 and 2011, Media Matters states that Carlson “spent approximately an hour a week calling in to Bubba the Love Sponge, a popular shock-jock radio program, where he spoke with the hosts about a variety of cultural and political topics in sometimes-vulgar terms.”
Among the lowlights — what the president might call “locker room talk” — is a recording from 2009 of Carlson describing an instance in which teenagers at Carlson’s daughter’s girls-only boarding school were having their first sexual encounters with each other: “If it weren’t my daughter, I would love that scenario.” You can listen to the audio here.
In 2006, Carlson called for the end of rape shield laws:
“If I’m alleging rape, I have the protection of anonymity. I can say whatever I want while hiding behind anonymity, while the person I accused, whether he’s guilty or not, has his life destroyed. That’s totally unfair … I mean, we’ve done a couple of shows on this, and we always had these feminists on who kind of, “Well, because no one would ever report rape.” Really? I don’t know. Women seem to be adults to me. I mean, in other words, if you are grievously injured by another person, it’s not your fault. I don’t understand why, if you’re an adult, you just can’t get up and say, “This is what the person did to me.”
Over the years, according to the audio, Carlson had several ugly things to say about female politicians and other women in the public sphere. Arianna Huffington is a “pig.” TV host Alexis Stewart, the daughter of Martha Stewart, is “cunty.” Britney Spears and Paris Hilton are “the biggest white whores in America.” Carlson agreed with Bubba the Love Sponge when he said that the Fox News host wants “to fuck Sarah Palin.” Hillary Clinton is “anti-penis” and “you know in your heart that if she could castrate you, she would.” Carlson feels sorry for Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan in the way he feels “sorry for unattractive women.” Sex workers, at large, are “slutty and pathetic.” Women, in general, are “extremely primitive.”
In a statement released on Sunday night, Carlson stated: “Media Matters caught me saying something naughty on a radio show more than a decade ago. Rather than express the usual ritual contrition, how about this: I’m on television every weeknight live for an hour. If you want to know what I think, you can watch. Anyone who disagrees with my views is welcome to come on and explain why.” The non-apology suggests Carlson might not face much blowback at Fox News, the network that reportedly harbored sexual harassment for years under the dominion of the late Roger Ailes.
If Carlson wants his audience to know what he thinks today, here are some of his opinions on women that he’s shared on-air the last few years: In 2017, Carlson said “sexual harassment is a concept made up by Democrats.” Last year, Carlson said that rape survivors who don’t immediately come forward are “part of the problem.” In January, he claimed women earning higher salaries are responsible for “men in decline.” And for International Women’s Month, Carlson counterprogrammed his show with a charming series called “Men in America.”
This post has been updated.