Tucker Carlson said Wednesday that he felt like “a lunatic” and “a nutcase” when he went public with his concerns the National Security Agency is spying on him.
In a chat with Glenn Beck one day after the NSA’s inspector general announced an inquiry into his weeks-old claims, he said, “I felt like kind of a lunatic. You don’t want to go on TV — I mean, would you want to go on air and say, ‘They’re spying on me?’ No, you sound like a nutcase, but I didn’t feel like I had a choice.”
In June, the star of Fox News’ primetime lineup shared with his millions of viewers that he’d been told the NSA was monitoring him. The NSA then denied that he was a target and the news cycle continued to churn for a few days.
The agency said in a statement at that time, “On June 28, 2021, Tucker Carlson alleged that the National Security Agency has been ‘monitoring our electronic communications and is planning to leak them in an attempt to take this show off the air.’ This allegation is untrue. Tucker Carlson has never been an intelligence target of the Agency and the NSA has never had any plans to try to take his program off the air. NSA has a foreign intelligence mission. We target foreign powers to generate insights on foreign activities that could harm the United States. With limited exceptions (e.g. an emergency), NSA may not target a US citizen without a court order that explicitly authorizes the targeting.”
Carlson responded on his program, “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” saying, “The NSA sent us an infuriatingly dishonest formal statement, an entire paragraph of lies written purely for the benefit of the intel community’s lackeys at CNN and MSNBC, all those people they hire with the titles on the screen.”
On Tuesday, the agency’s inspector general released a statement that said his office is “conducting a review related to recent allegations that the NSA improperly targeted the communications of a member of the U.S. news media.”