Fox News Tucker Carlson says the NSA is monitoring his communications in an attempt to take his show off the air.
“Now, that’s a shocking claim and ordinarily would be skeptical of it. It’s illegal for the NSA to spy on American citizens. It’s a crime. It’s not a third-world country. Things like that should not happen in America. But unfortunately, they do happen, and in this case, they did happen,” said Carlson in a broadcast on Fox News.
“The whistleblower who is in a position to know repeated back to us information about a story that we are working on that could have only come directly from my texts and emails. There’s no other possible source for that information, period,” Carlson said.
On Wednesday, Minority House Leader Kevin McCarthy called for Devin Nunes to investigate the claims.
“Now, there is a public report that NSA read the emails of Fox News host Tucker Carlson. Although NSA publicly denied targeting Carlson, I have serious questions regarding this matter that must be answered,” said McCarthy.
“Given this disturbing trend, I’ve asked HPSCI Ranking Member Devin Nunes to investigate and find answers on behalf of the American people. The NSA cannot be used as a political instrument, and House Republicans will ensure accountability and transparency,” McCarthy added.
Michael Hayden, ex-director of the CIA and NSA, responded to McCarthy’s statement on Twitter saying,”You’re an asshole.”
On Thursday, the NSA tweeted out a statement saying in part, “Tucker Carlson has never been an intelligence target of the Agency and the NSA has never had any plans to try to take his program off the air,” the statement read in part. “NSA has a foreign intelligence mission. We target foreign powers to generate insights on foreign activities that could harm the United States. With limited exceptions (e.g. an emergency), NSA may not target a US citizen without a court order that explicitly authorizes the targeting.”
Carlson then called the agency’s response a “paragraph of lies,” which he said “does not deny” his claims.
“Only Congress can force transparency on the intelligence agencies and they should do that immediately. Spying on opposition journalists is incompatible with democracy. If they are doing it to us, and again, they are definitely doing it to us, they are almost certainly doing it to others. This is scary and we need to stop it right away,” Carlson said.
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