Fox News Channel personality Tucker Carlson claimed last week that the National Security Agency had been spying on him in an effort to kick him off the air. Now, reports indicate that some Republican lawmakers are demanding answers from the Biden administration.
According to The Washington Times, a group of GOP legislators sent a letter to the NSA’s inspector general in an effort to find out more about Carlson’s claims.
“A disturbing trend”
U.S. Reps. Jim Jordan (R-OH), James Comer (R-KY), and Matt Gaetz (R-FL) signed the letter, insisting that “Carlson’s disclosures about the NSA’s actions are serious and the NSA’s elusive response demands further inquiry.”
In his own statement, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) raised the same issue.
“For the past several months, I have seen a disturbing trend at the National Security Agency,” he said.
McCarthy went on to assert that the “NSA has refused to deliver information requested by the Republican Members on the House Intelligence Committee who are trying to fulfill their oversight responsibilities.”
Referencing the latest allegations by Carlson, the minority leader said he has “serious questions regarding this matter that must be answered” despite the NSA’s denial.
“In a position to know”
“Given this disturbing trend, I’ve asked [House Intelligence Committee] Ranking Member Devin Nunes to investigate and find answers on behalf of the American people,” McCarthy said. “The NSA cannot be used as a political instrument, and House Republicans will ensure accountability and transparency.”
The statement did not sit well with retired U.S. Air Force Gen. Michael Hayden, however, who tweeted in response that McCarthy is “an a**hole.”
As for Carlson’s explosive claims, he alleged that a trusted source came forward with evidence of the spying campaign, asserting: “The whistleblower, who is in a position to know, repeated back to us information about a story we’re working on that could only have come directly from my texts and emails. There’s no other possible source for that information, period.”
In response to an NSA statement denying that Carlson was a target of its surveillance, Gaetz expressed skepticism.
“What’s interesting is there is no denial that they were monitoring Tucker Carlson, even if he wasn’t the target,” he explained. “There’s probably somebody in Tucker Carlson’s orbit that the NSA was monitoring.”