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Tucker Carlson informed associates he voted for Kanye, not Trump

Different Carlson associates mentioned the affinity between the 2 males — one a longtime conservative commentator who as soon as wore a bowtie and moved seamlessly inside liberal political and media circles, the opposite an eccentric music celeb whose tumultuous relationship with Kim Kardashian just lately resulted in divorce — is actual.

Previous to the election, Carlson mentioned he would vote for West, in response to a 3rd one that is aware of Carlson. “He and Kanye get alongside. They each often discover themselves within the crosshairs. They’re each pro-life,” this affiliate mentioned.

Carlson is registered as a Republican to vote in Florida, in response to Florida registration information. The Fox host voted in-person in 2020, in response to voting information in Lee County, the place Carlson lives a part of the 12 months.

West did not make the poll in Florida in 2020, nevertheless, suggesting that if Carlson certainly voted for the unstable rapper, he needed to have accomplished so by writing in his identify.

West, working on a “Birthday Celebration” ticket, made the poll in 12 states and garnered greater than 60,000 votes. However not like in states like New York and Connecticut, West didn’t submit the required paperwork to Florida’s elections division, so any write-in votes for him weren’t counted.

With Carlson declining to remark, POLITICO sought to confirm whether or not native information may point out that anybody did attempt to vote for West. Lee County doesn’t monitor what number of write-in votes non-qualified candidates like West acquired, complicating these efforts. However within the precinct the place Carlson voted final 12 months, there have been 8 invalid write-in votes for president, a county official mentioned.

Tammy Lipa, one other Lee County election official, mentioned in a short interview that she remembered that some folks within the county did certainly write in West.

An outspoken populist whose eponymous program has grow to be the preferred present on cable information, Carlson received credit score on the left for serving to persuade Trump in early 2020 to not assault Iran. He’s additionally been vital of a few of Trump’s insurance policies, reminiscent of prison justice reform. However his remarks on racial points and immigration have earned him widespread condemnation by liberals who accuse Carlson of spreading poisonous, divisive concepts.

Carlson and West have a pleasant however not essentially shut relationship, associates say. The 2 males have spoken every now and then, and Carlson even spent a while in Wyoming with West shortly earlier than the election. A deliberate interview fell by way of, though the 2 had a “cordial backwards and forwards,” in response to an individual aware of the journey. West couldn’t be reached for remark.

Carlson has praised West on his program. Final August, he known as him “essentially the most compelling voice towards abortion and Deliberate Parenthood.”

“[O]n core conservative points, not political points like laws earlier than the Congress, however on foundational questions on life and youngsters and what occurs if you die, nobody with a nationwide platform has been extra sincere or honest or efficient than Kanye West has been,” Carlson mentioned. “Perhaps in generations.”

In 2018, Carlson implicitly in contrast West to Trump after the hip-hop artist, sporting a “Make America Nice Once more” hat, visited the Oval Workplace to ostensibly talk about points like prison justice reform and different insurance policies that have an effect on Black People. The assembly devolved into West pontificating for 10 minutes on points reminiscent of “male vitality,” sleep deprivation and his personal psychological well being.

“[M]uch like another person who involves thoughts, West could also be exactly loopy sufficient to assume for himself, and that’s a helpful high quality proper now,” Carlson mentioned. “However pay attention fastidiously to what he mentioned. Sprinkled all through his ramblings are flashes of fact, actual insights into the best way the world truly is fairly than the best way they inform us it’s. … And that makes him harmful to a system that’s primarily based nearly solely on piety and mendacity. For those who’re benefiting from a system like that, Kanye West should be crushed.”

Carlson didn’t vote for Trump in 2016 both, in response to an interview he gave Enterprise Insider in 2017 — through which he mentioned he didn’t vote within the presidential election in any respect.

“I by no means vote in order that’s the reality. I didn’t vote this time, I by no means do,” he mentioned. “I’m registered with a celebration that I sincerely despise as a result of I believe it’s actually a drive for unhealthy on this nation and it’s the Democratic Celebration. However I’m registered as a result of I reside within the district, it’s a one-party state and the one election I at all times vote in is the mayor’s race as a result of it issues. I personal property there, I raised 4 kids there.”

On the time, Carlson was residing in Washington, D.C.’s posh Palisades neighborhood, which voted overwhelmingly for Hillary Clinton. However he offered his D.C. house in 2020 for almost $4 million. He now splits his time between Florida and Maine.

Carlson’s feedback about West stand at odds along with his on-air persona: a pugnacious Trump backer and conservative thought chief who opines incessantly on immigration and the Covid-19 pandemic, echoing the previous president’s controversial views on each points.

However Carlson has a repute for criticizing Trump in non-public, in response to media reporter Ben Smith, who described the Fox host as journalists’ “go-to man for sometimes-unflattering tales about Donald J. Trump” in a latest New York Occasions column.

Carlson has additionally been recognized to share his candid assessments with Trump instantly. He reportedly informed Trump final fall that his debate efficiency “was not good,” in response to Wall Road Journal reporter Michael Bender’s new e book “Frankly, We Did Win This Election: The Inside Story of How Trump Misplaced.”

Since Trump left workplace, Carlson has been a fierce critic of President Joe Biden and his administration, and even just lately accused the Nationwide Safety Company of surveilling him, prompting a uncommon on-the-record denial from the NSA.

Marc Caputo contributed to this report.

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