Tucker Carlson’s spat with Boris Johnson turns nasty

    WORLD  21 February 2024 - 20:19

    Some of Steerpike’s wiser American friends like to say that Tucker Carlson, the mayhem-causing TV man, has a lot in common with Boris Johnson.

    Both men are children of privilege who made their names in media. Tucker Carlson may not have gone into politics, as Boris has, but he’s often been talked about as a future Republican president, The Spectator says.

    It’s fair to say today, however, that Boris and Tucker don’t like each other much. After the invasion of Ukraine, Boris accused Carlson of ‘intimidating’ Republicans who might otherwise help the West stand up to Russia. Carlson, for his part, has called Johnson a ‘terrified old woman.’

    Things just got nastier. Earlier this month, Boris suggested Carlson’s now infamous interview with Vladimir Putin was straight out of ‘Hitler’s playbook’. Carlson, never one to shrink from confrontation, reached out to Boris to propose a debate between them, mano a mano, at Oxford University or somewhere similar, but struggled to get anywhere. After some effort, however, he was able to get in touch with a Johnson advisor.

    Johnson was keen but, according to Carlson, he had conditions. He wanted a payment of $1 million (£800,000). He wanted the interview streamed on X/Twitter. And he wanted Carlson to acknowledge that, after his interview with Russia’s leader, a showdown with a former British prime minister would help rebuild his reputation.

    Carlson laughed off the last suggestion but told Johnson he would be willing to pay ‘$1 million in currency, gold or Bitcoin’. Upon hearing that, Team Johnson duly kicked into gear and approached Carlson to arrange a meeting and — most importantly — the payment. Johnson’s office said they initially accepted the interview providing the money went solely to Ukrainian veteran charities.

    But Carlson yesterday decided to go public, denouncing Johnson in an interview on Blaze TV. Nobody said freedom was free. Still, Steerpike can’t help wishing the debate would happen. Might Elon Musk, Carlson’s new patron at X, cough up the cash?

    Caliber.Az

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