Apr 3, 2017

Tucker Carlson gets the New Yorker treatment

The New Yorker's latest profile takes an inside look at Fox News' Tucker Carlson, who became host of his own show, "Tucker Carlson Tonight," back in November to fill the space formerly occupied by Megyn Kelly. Comeback star Carlson, buoyed by Trump's election win and the explosion of interest in political news, drew even better ratings than Kelly had, and has proven to "thrive in the tumult of Trump-era politics":

Some cable shows rely on the drama of putting people in the same place, but Carlson's thrives on remote interviews, which allow his producers to "box" his face, keeping it onscreen so that viewers can watch him react. When Carlson is talking to someone he agrees with, he pulls back, adopting the role of an earnest student seeking edification from a wise professor. But the segments most people remember are the contentious ones.
Carlson grows incredulous and furrows his brow; he grows more incredulous and unfurrows it, letting his features melt into a disbelieving smile, which sometimes gives way to a high-pitched chuckle of outrage. One of his favorite tactics is to insist that his guest answer a question that is essentially unanswerable, as when he pressed Bill Nye to tell him what percentage of climate change was caused by human activity, then berated him for evading the question.

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Pence aide says intel report of Russia helping Trump is "false information"

Marc Short. Screenshot: Fox News.

Marc Short, chief of staff to Vice President Mike Pence, claimed on "Fox News Sunday" that the White House has not received intelligence that Russia is seeking to help President Trump win re-election, calling it "false information" that has been selectively leaked by Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee.

The big picture: Short and national security adviser Robert O'Brien both dismissed reports published in the Washington Post and New York Times last week about a briefing provided by senior intelligence official Shelby Pierson, an aide to outgoing acting director of national intelligence Joseph Maguire.

Bernie's juggernaut

Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks in San Antonio last night with his wife, Jane. Photo: Eric Gay/AP

Sen. Bernie Sanders won so big in the Nevada caucuses that Democrats are hard-pressed to sketch a way he's not their nominee.

Driving the news: With 60% of precincts counted (slow, but better than Iowa!), Sanders is running away with 46% of delegates — crushing Joe Biden's 20%, Pete Buttigieg's 15%, Sen. Elizabeth Warren's 10% and Sen. Amy Klobuchar's 5%.

Clyburn: Sanders' "socialist" label will be "extra burden" in House races

Jim Clyburn with Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.) said on ABC's "This Week" Sunday that Sen. Bernie Sanders' identification as a democratic socialist may be an "extra burden" in down-ballot House races if he were to win the Democratic nomination.

Why it matters: Clyburn's comments echo fears from many establishment Democrats, who worry the House majority they won in 2018 by taking moderate seats carried by President Trump could be at risk with Sanders at the top of the ticket.