Will Tucker Carlson Run for President in 2024?

Rumors abound that the Fox News host could run

Tucker Carlson
Tucker Carlson in 2018.
Gage Skidmore/Creative Commons
By Tobias Carroll / July 3, 2020 6:00 am

As political pundits go, Tucker Carlson has had a particularly interesting career. Some may know him best from his time as co-host of Crossfire — including a contentious 2004 debate with Jon Stewart. He was a founder of the conservative news site The Daily Caller, which he recently sold his stake in. And he’s reached a certain level of ubiquity with his show on Fox News. Could that be the apex of his career — or might he have his sights on running for office?

A new report by Alex Thompson at Politico notes that the idea of Carlson as the Republican presidential nominee in 2024 has built up some steam. It’s an idea that’s begun circulating in the political world and among conservative donors. As Thompson writes, Carlson checks off many of the same boxes Donald Trump did while still maintaining a distinct political persona:

While practically every Republican eyeing a 2024 presidential run is professing loyalty to Trump the person, Carlson has become perhaps the highest-profile proponent of “Trumpism” — a blend of anti-immigrant nationalism, economic populism and America First isolationism that he articulates unapologetically and with some snark.

As the Politico articles points out, the outcome of the 2020 election will likely have an impact on what the Republican Party will look like going forward — and could affect the chances of a theoretical Carlson run.

It’s useful to revisit a 2018 Columbia Journalism Review article about Carlson by Lyz Lenz. In the article, Lenz explores Carlson’s peculiar career arc, going “from writing National Magazine Award–nominated articles and being hailed by some of the best editors in the business, to shouting about immigrants on Fox News.” It’s a fascinating look at one person’s evolving persona — and it might have serious implications on American politics.

It’s also possible that it might not; after all, trying to predict political nominees 4 years before an election can also be an exercise in frustration. Still, much like Trump before him, Carlson has the advantage of a large media platform, and his would be a familiar face for many voters. At this point in American politics, the unexpected is about the only constant there is.

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