Fox News host Tucker Carlson is no stranger to controversy, including efforts to boycott his show’s advertisers and remove him from the airwaves.
Former President Bill Clinton’s daughter, Chelsea, has joined in on the public backlash by calling on Facebook to ban the host from its social media platform. In a recent tweet, Chelsea Clinton wrote: “In December [Facebook] banned claims about [COVID-19] vaccines ‘that have been debunked by public health experts.'”
“Rare and severe”
By the same token, Chelsea Clinton pointed to recent remarks by Carlson on the topic of vaccine efficacy and arguing that it should also be banned from Facebook, claiming that it is “especially troubling given Republican men are currently most likely to say they’re not interested in being vaccinated.”
The Fox News personality’s controversial comments reportedly came in response to the Biden administration’s decision to pause the distribution of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine after a handful of cases described by officials as a “rare and severe type of blood clot in individuals after receiving the vaccine.”
During a subsequent segment of Tucker Carlson Tonight, the host questioned why the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Biden health adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci continue to encourage facemask use and social distancing even after inoculation.
“If the vaccine is effective, there is no reason for people who have received the vaccine to wear masks or avoid physical contact,” Carlson argued, according to TheBlaze.
He went on to speculate that the vaccinations are not as effective as the government would have Americans believe, saying: “Maybe it doesn’t work and they’re simply not telling you that. Well, you hate to think that, especially if you’ve gotten two shots. But what’s the other potential explanation? We can’t think of one.”
“What we’re trying to accomplish”
Chelsea Clinton was not the only public figure to respond harshly to Carlson’s comments.
Fauci himself accused the host of pushing a conspiracy theory, concluding that the remarks “were counter to what we’re trying to accomplish to protect the safety and the health of the American public.”
The back-and-forth continued during a segment of Carlson’s show on Wednesday night.
“The only reason we are asking the question is because the people in charge are acting like [the vaccine] doesn’t work,” Carlson asserted, according to The Hill. “You see the president of the United States wearing a mask outside, you see the vice president doing the same thing. You see the guy in charge of coronavirus response…telling us that, again, after you’ve had the vaccine, you must remain under the restrictions.”
Not only did the clip remain available on Facebook after Chelsea Clinton’s call to take it down, but it also went on to become a trending topic across the platform.