Rep. George Santos has few allies in Congress. It’s hard to make friends when no one can be sure you’re not actively lying to their face. But Santos can now count on the support of at least one voice in Republican politics, a true master among deceivers: Fox host Tucker Carlson.
On Thursday night Carlson delivered an impassioned defense-and-dismissal of the controversy surrounding the scandal-riddled congressman.
In a sarcastic monologue Carlson honed in on petty lies told by Santos, ignoring the litany of more serious claims against him. “This thief of volleyball glory, strides the halls of the United States Congress unimpeded by law enforcement. It’s like another insurrection,” Carlson mocked.
“No volleyball scholarship, never worked at CitiBank,” Carlson quipped. “What percentage of the people who voted for George Santos under false pretenses would have done so had they known he never played volleyball and never worked at Citibank” he asked.
It turns out, a lot of people. According to a Newsday/Siena College poll, 78 percent of sampled voters in Santos’ Long Island district think he should resign, including 71 percent of Republicans.
The massive split is likely due to the sheer magnitude of the lies Santos has told. While he did lie about his athletic prowess, and his employment at CitiBank, he also faked being Jewish, lied about having family members who survived the Holocaust, and faked his business acumen. At one point Carlson scoffed that critics viewed Santos as “9/11 in human form.” Carlson did not mention that Santos also lied about his mother having died as a result of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Rolling Stone did find one thing Santos didn’t lie about: being pretty damn good at Karaoke.
Santos is facing a criminal investigation in Brazil, an FBI probe regarding allegations he stole thousands from a disabled veteran, a federal investigation regarding potential campaign finance violations, and calls from his own local Republican Party to step down.
It’s worth repeating exactly how expansive and absurd Santos’ campaign of dishonesty has been, but it will likely do little to dissuade Carlson. The Fox host lies readily, on a nightly basis. Carlson’s career has been built on lying without consequence, so why would he ever condemn a member of his own party for doing the same?