Last week, former President Donald Trump said that “I guess I would” consider former Fox host Tucker Carlson for a vice presidential nomination, setting off a wave of enthusiasm among Trump’s extremely online right-wing media fan base. Carlson, who privately said that he hates Trump “passionately,” has apparently not commented on the trial balloon.
In addition to vocal support for a Vice President Carlson from Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA,) Salem radio host and close Trump ally Charlie Kirk has been a fervent proponent of the idea. Calling Carlson “tough,” “principled,” and “electric,” Kirk fantasized about the X vlogger as an “irresistible” pull for young voters and suburban women. Many voices in right-wing media also love the idea -- though some, notably including Donald Trump Jr., just don’t think Carlson would be interested.
“Who is the second most trusted, the second most popular, the second smartest and principled person in the conservative movement?” Kirk asked last week. “If he was still alive, it would have been Rush Limbaugh. I think we all agree with that. It is without a doubt Tucker Carlson.”
Kirk’s enthusiasm could be described as fanboying, and it continued throughout the show.
“Tucker Carlson might be the smartest person in the movement. He is a loyal family man.” “He’s real. He’s honest. He’s a true American.” “He is irresistible online. He’s smart. He’s tough.” Picking Carlson for vice president “would literally be a hack — it would break the matrix.” Sneering with excitement, Kirk asked, “Could you imagine Tucker Carlson at a press gaggle?”
“You’ve got the alpha beast Trump, and you got a VP that is probably the smartest, smoothest, person in the conservative movement that has our trust.”
Kirk came back to the idea on November 13, celebrating the “hundreds of thousands of tweets in favor of it over the weekend,” as well as Trump’s ringside appearance at a UFC fight, with an entourage including Carlson.
“Who else other than Donald Trump and Tucker Carlson can get this kind of hero's welcome at a UFC fight? … What Tucker and Trump present is cultural power and a cultural phenomenon in a political space,” Kirk beamed. “It’s a completely different dynamic. … Tucker understands the philosophical, intellectual base that motivates the muscular class.”
Kirk is not alone in his enthusiasm, which has begun spreading throughout conservative media:
- Sean Davis, a co-founder of The Federalist, told Kirk he loves the idea: “I love it. I love Tucker. I think it’d be great. I think it'd be great for America. He's one of the only people who says all the things that we all think but aren't allowed to say.”
- Podcaster and serial plagiarist Benny Johnson cited “Elon’s razor” -- a reference to X owner Elon Musk -- “the most entertaining outcome is always the right one” to say that Trump and Carlson are “your ticket right there,” adding that “Tucker Carlson with Secret Service protection … and access to the military” is a “thing I want.”
- Daily Wire host Michael Knowles said that he has “floated this idea for years at this point” and “if I were Tucker, two years ago, I probably wouldn't want this,” but now that Carlson no longer has his Fox News perch and salary, “he’s got less to lose,” and “who else could run with Trump that the base loves? … He represents the Buchanan wing of the party. He represents the conservative wing of the conservative party.”
- On November 14, Johnson asked Rep. Troy Nehls (R-TX) about this on The Benny Show, to which Nehls responded that he likes the idea and doubts that any of the primary candidates could be Trump’s vice president, “but Tucker Carlson, he really, really could -- he just speaks a lot of truth. And he’s real. And I think the American people love him.”
Despite the excitement from some, other right-wing media voices aren’t so sure Carlson would even join the ticket. On Newsmax’s Chris Plante: The Right Squad, guest Marc Lotter acknowledged that Carlson is “probably one of the smartest people around” and it would make an “epic” ticket, however fellow panelist and guest Jason Nichols said, “I don’t think that that’s something he wants to do. I think he likes his life.” Co-host Chris Plante agreed that Carlson likely “wouldn’t want any part” of a Trump White House.
Even one of Trump’s own children, Donald Trump Jr., sees a Trump/Carlson ticket as highly unlikely, though he does like the sound of it. Responding to viewer comments on his podcast Triggered, Trump said that “I don’t think he would” accept a vice presidential nomination, because it’s “not his thing.”
However, Trump added, if Carlson would accept, he “would be my first, second, third, fourth, and fifth choice for VP if I could decide right now.”
“He’d be great on a lot of issues,” Trump said, “and it would also drive the other side insane.”