Jul 9, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Duckworth blasts Tucker Carlson, saying he "doesn't know what patriotism is"

Sen. Tammy Duckworth holds a paper while speaking at a Congressional hearing

Sen. Tammy Duckworth. Photo: Greg Nash/POOL/AFP/Getty Images

Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) attacked Fox News host Tucker Carlson in a New York Times op-ed on Thursday, saying he "doesn't know what patriotism is," after he recently called her a "deeply silly and unimpressive person."

Why it matters: Duckworth, a Purple Heart recipient and double amputee, and Carlson have engaged in a back and forth since Duckworth said Sunday that "we should listen to the argument" for removing George Washington statues.

  • Carlson responded to Duckworth on Tuesday night, labeling her and Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) as "vandals," per the Times.
  • “There are many of us here who do like this country ... And when vandals like Tammy Duckworth and Ilhan Omar tell us that we’re not allowed to question their patriotism, even as they scream about how horrible America is, we have every right to laugh in their faces, and we should," Carlson said.

What Duckworth is saying:

  • "One night later, [Carlson] claimed that I called George Washington a traitor even though I had unambiguously answered no when asked whether anyone could justify saying that he was.
  • "Then he argued that changes to monuments of our founders 'deserve a debate,' which, somehow, was different and more acceptable to him than the 'national dialogue' that led him to question my patriotism just 24 hours earlier."
  • "But while I would risk my own safety to protect a statue of his from harm, I’ll fight to my last breath to defend every American’s freedom to have his or her own opinion about Washington’s flawed history."
  • "They’re doing it because they’re desperate for America’s attention to be on anything other than Donald Trump’s failure to lead our nation, and because they think that Mr. Trump’s electoral prospects will be better if they can turn us against one another."
"So while I would put on my old uniform and go to war all over again to protect the right of Tucker Carlson and Donald Trump to say offensive things on TV and Twitter, I will also spend every moment I can from now until November fighting to elect leaders who would rather do good for their country than do well for themselves."
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