Ted Cruz Grovels to Tucker Carlson, Cements New GOP Standard: No Criticism of January 6th

Late. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) asked Tucker Carlson for forgiveness Thursday. His sin: to suggest that some of the people who stormed the U.S. capital on January 6, 2021, were terrorists. The former presidential candidate humiliated himself in front of millions of conservative viewers and tried to atone to dare to criticize the MAGA troublemakers, but a stinging Carlson refused to accept his apology.

The saga started the day before, on the eve of the anniversary of the riot, when Cruz described the historic insurgency attempt as a “violent terrorist attack” during a speech in the Senate. His remarks sparked a violent backlash in the MAGAverset – which has become increasingly hostile to criticism of January 6 – culminating in Carlson knock out with the senator in prime time Wednesday night.

An overzealous Cruz appeared on Carlson’s show Thursday to smooth things over – an astonishing setup in which one of the country’s most high-profile elected Republicans whipped himself in front of a cable news host.

The interview was not just a demonstration of Carlson’s power over the GOP, but of how revisionism on January 6 has become Republican Orthodoxy – a line in the sand that officials dare not cross.

Aside from former President Donald Trump, there is arguably no one who has been more dedicated to changing January 6 to a noble moment than Carlson. He produced a three-part documentary series last fall about Fox Nation called “Patriot Purge,” a naked fascist piece of propaganda riddled with misinformation, omissions, and conspiracy theories about the January 6 attack in which experts worried about directly glorified political violence. And on Thursday, by humiliating Cruz on the anniversary of the attack, he demonstrated that his revisionist narrative of January 6 is now the dominant one in the GOP’s policy.

“Tucker, thank you for having me on,” Cruz said at the beginning of the section. “When you sent your episode last night, I texted you shortly after and said, ‘Listen, I want to keep going,’ because the way I put it yesterday was sloppy, and it was frankly stupid. “

“I do not buy it!” exclaimed Carlson, cutting off Cruz. “Hey, hey, hey, hey, I’m not buying that.”

Carlson explained that he believes Cruz, an Ivy League-trained lawyer whose name was flown up as a possible Supreme Court nominee, is not one who is ruthless with words – a reasonable argument given that Cruz has mentioned the Capitol. the riot as a “terrorist attack” on several occasions over the past year.His use of the term could hardly be described as off-the-cuff.

The servile senator, who may have known he was losing this round, turned to another explanation for his remarks.

“What I was referring to is the limited number of people involved in violent attacks on police officers,” Cruz said. “I think you and I both agree that if you assault a police officer, you should go to jail. I did not say that the thousands of peaceful protesters who support Donald Trump are somehow terrorists. I did not say that the millions of patriots across the country who support Trump are terrorists. “

Carlson did not buy this explanation either.

“But wait a minute, what you just said does not make sense,” he shot back. ‘So if anyone assaults officers, he should be charged and jailed. I could not agree more. I’ve been saying that for years. But that person is still not a terrorist. How many people have been charged with terrorism on January 6? Why did you use that word ?! You play into the characteristics of the other side. ”

Cruz defended himself, saying that over the past decade he has called people who violently assault police “terrorists” and reminded Carlson that he was among the Republicans protesting the results of the 2020 election.

“That being said, Tucker, I agree with you,” Cruz said. “It was a mistake to say that yesterday, and the reason is what you just said, which is that we have now had a year with Democrats and the media distorting words and trying to say that we are all terrorists; I’m trying to say you’re a terrorist, then I’m a terrorist. “

Carlson remained steadfast in his disapproval, saying at the end of the interview, “I just do not believe in you. And I mean that with respect.”

Carlson’s essential message, as conveyed during “Patriot Purge” and several prime-time shows before and since, was remarkably dangerous. Nicole Hemmer, author of “Messengers of the Right: Conservative Media and the Transformation of American Politics,” described the documentary as “an overall fantasy about the uprising that reads like this: ‘It was not a revolt. To the extent that there was violence, it was agitated by members of the government and left-wing agitators. It was all orchestrated so that the full force of “Federal law enforcement could be unleashed against Trump supporters and mark them as enemies of the state.”

Carlson’s interview with Cruz was possibly also an example of a future Republican party after Trump. Cruz, who finished second after Trump in the 2016 primary, has positioned himself as Trump’s successor.

But the mumble about a potential Carlson 2024 bid has gotten louder in recent months, and if Thursday’s interview was any indication, the GOP belongs more to Carlson than Cruz.

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