Mitch McConnell Bashes Tucker Carlson for ‘Demonization’ of Ukraine

Andrew Harnik/Getty Images
Andrew Harnik/Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) didn’t hesitate to fault talking head Tucker Carlson for spreading Russian propaganda that seriously hindered GOP support for Ukraine.

Asked Tuesday why he thought it was taking so long to pass aid for the eastern European ally, McConnell didn’t waste time blaming the loudmouthed conservative media personality.

“I think the demonization of Ukraine began by Tucker Carlson, who in my opinion ended up where he should’ve been all along, which is interviewing Vladimir Putin,” McConnell said.

Carlson interviewed Putin in February in a two-hour chat with the Russian leader, which saw the former Fox host criticized for his lack of pushback against Putin’s numerous questionable claims.

“He had an enormous audience, which convinced a lot of rank-and-file Republicans that maybe this was a mistake,” McConnell continued.

Tucker Carlson’s Sad Excuse for Not Pressing Putin on Navalny

The Senate on Tuesday made a significant step toward a final vote on an aid package for its allies, which includes $61 billion for Ukraine, $26 billion for Israel, and $8 billion for Taiwan. Nine Republicans flipped their votes Tuesday evening to send the bill toward final passage, clearing a significant hurdle as it makes its way through the house.

With his comments, McConnell joins a growing list of Republicans who have voiced concern over the possible influence of Russian misinformation on their party. In early April, House Intelligence Committee Chair Mike Turner (R-OH) affirmed a fellow Republican’s assertion that Russian propaganda had infiltrated the GOP.

That colleague, House Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Mike McCaul (R-TX) said, “Russian propaganda has made its way into the United States, unfortunately, and it’s infected a good chunk of my party’s base.” He blamed conservative news outlets for spreading it.

Turner agreed. “Oh, it’s absolutely true,” he said on CNN. “We see directly coming from Russia attempts to mask communications that are anti-Ukraine and pro-Russia messages, some of which we even hear being uttered on the House floor.”

McConnell’s comments raise alarms that Russian influence has made its way into the Senate as well.

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