As NewsBusters previously reported, The Washington Post quickly rushed to the defense of Virginia’s Democratic Governor Ralph Northam after a racially charged photo on his medical school yearbook page surfaced. The picture in question featured a man in blackface standing next to a man in a KKK robe. Fox News host Tucker Carlson singled out the Post on his show Friday night, accusing the paper of ripping the Republican and skipping the Democrat in the midst of a very competitive gubernatorial election.
"The Washington Post is not a serious newspaper," Carlson said. "It's a joke." He called it "this kind of newsletter run by the richest man in the world, Jeff Bezos, really a shameful publication." Carlson argued that the paper got “pretty forensic with Ed Gillespie,” Northam’s Republican opponent in the 2017 gubernatorial election. (Post blogger Jen Rubin ripped Gillespie on MSNBC as "disgraceful.") And yet, “They couldn’t find a yearbook photo of the guy running for governor?”
Believe it or not, Carlson’s guest, liberal radio show host Chris Hahn, agreed with Carlson: “This is some of the worst opposition research I have ever seen. How none of his primary opponents or his political opponents or the local papers or the national press for that matter...found this picture is beyond me. This was a hotly contested race. You would think that they would leave no stone unturned.”
Carlson argued that The Post did not have to do any opposition research at all, they could have instead simply done some “reporting.” Carlson then indicated his desire to “get the Washington Post guys who were assigned to Ralph Northam on this show to explain how they missed this.”
Hahn later pointed out how “I’ve done operation (sic) research in my life and...the first thing you try to do is find pictures of them from when they were in college.” After pointing out that “The Post was pretty good at that when it came to Brett Kavanaugh,” Carlson attempted to explain why they did not share the same passion for investigating Northam’s past: “because they’re shills. That’s why. It’s not a newspaper, it’s a newsletter for the Democratic Party.”
Carlson could have noted that the Post offered a 3,000-word "expose" of Rick Perry in 2011 charging that on a property he leased, they found a rock with the N-word painted on it....that had been painted over with white paint. Now how does that compare to Governor Blackface? That's "leaving no stone unturned."
In May of 2012, the Post published a 5,400-word "expose" claiming Mitt Romney pinned a kid down and gave him an involuntary haircut in 1965, when he was in high school.
But they couldn't find anything on Northam in 1984, when he was in his mid-twenties.
In 2017, the Post editorial board jumped firmly into Northam’s camp, including a gushy editorial on the night of Northam’s victory over Gillespie romanticizing “The Triumph of Decency Over Dread,” arguing that Northam’s campaign relied on “decency, civility, and fear” while Gillespie resorted to “fear, dread, and barely veiled racist coding.” The editorial board apparently forgot about the pro-Northam Latino Victory Fund’s nasty ad depicting scared minority finding themselves in the crosshairs of a Confederate flag-flying pickup truck driver with a Gillespie campaign sticker.
A transcript of the relevant portion of Friday’s edition of Tucker Carlson Tonight is below. Click “expand” to read more.
Tucker Carlson Tonight
TUCKER CARLSON: I will say his campaign didn’t find this picture but then neither did The Washington Post.
CHRIS HAHN: Right.
CARLSON: And again, and I don’t… The Washington Post is not a serious newspaper. It’s a joke.
HAHN: Nor his primary opponents.
CARLSON: No, I…Look, I agree. But, but the Post got, which is this kind of newsletter run by the richest man in the world, Jeff Bezos, really a shameful publication. But it got pretty forensic with Ed Gillespie, I remember, quite. They couldn’t find a yearbook photo of the guy running for governor? Why do you think that is?
HAHN: I got to tell you. This is some of the worst opposition research I have ever seen in my life. How none of his primary opponents or his political opponents or the local papers or the national press for that matter…
HAHN: …found this picture is beyond me. This was a hotly contested race. You would think that they would leave no stone unturned. They would have talked to friends from college to find out what happened.
CARLSON: Yeah. Maybe.
HAHN: They did not. This was poor opposition research by everybody involved here and it’s time for him to go…
CARLSON: Not even…
HAHN: …he should resign tonight.
CARLSON: …not opposition research. Just like reporting. It’d be interesting. Maybe we can get the Washington Post guys who were assigned to Ralph Northam on this show to explain how they missed this; the geniuses over there.
HAHN: Well, I’ve done, I’ve done operation research in my life and…
HAHN: …you know, the first thing you do is try to find pictures of them from when they were in college and try to find some…
CARLSON: Yeah, yearbook pictures…
HAHN: This is, this is not…
CARLSON: The Post was pretty good at that when it came to Brett Kavanaugh.
HAHN: …find out what he is about.
CARLSON: Because they’re shills. That’s why. It’s not a newspaper. It’s a newsletter for the Democratic Party, as you well know. Chris Hahn, great to see you. Thank you.