Fox News' Tucker Carlson dropped by major advertiser for claiming poor immigrants make US "dirtier"

Tucker Carlson is in hot water with one of his advertisers due to comments he made about immigration last week

By Matthew Rozsa

Staff Writer

Published December 17, 2018 8:53AM (EST)

 (Fox News)
(Fox News)

Fox News host Tucker Carlson is currently facing a crisis with one of his advertisers due to controversial remarks he made last week about immigration.

The insurance company Pacific Life issued a statement on Friday expressing extreme dissatisfaction with comments made by Carlson about immigration on the previous night's program. In a public statement, Pacific Life explained that "as a company, we strongly disagree with Mr. Carlson's statements. Our customer base and our workforce reflect the diversity of our great nation, something we take great pride in. We will not be advertising on Mr. Carlson's show in the coming weeks as we reevaluate our relationship with his program."

During a Thursday night episode of his program, Carlson expressed disgust with American immigration policy and argued that liberal talking points were encouraging undocumented immigrants to flood into the country.

"Our leaders demand that you shut up and accept this. We have a moral obligation to admit the world's poor, they tell us, even if it makes our own country poorer, and dirtier, and more divided. Immigration is a form of atonement," Carlson said on his program, according to a transcript by Media Matters. "Previous leaders of our country committed sins -- we must pay for those sins by welcoming an endless chain of migrant caravans. That's the argument they make."

He later added, "What is more predictable is how leaders of the caravan are starting to talk. Suddenly, they sound like community college professors from Long Beach. Entitled, cut off from reality, and highly aggressive. Yesterday a group of leaders of the caravan marched into the U.S. consulate in Mexico, and demanded $50,000 to return to their own countries."

As Carlson facetiously put it, "Huddled masses yearning to breathe free? Nope, cynical shakedown artists who have been watching too much CNN. No surprise there. When rich liberals tell you that America owes you a comfortable life, nobody should be shocked when you believe them."

In a statement, network spokeswoman Carly Shanahan said that "it is a shame that left wing advocacy groups, under the guise of being supposed ‘media watchdogs’ weaponize social media against companies in an effort to stifle free speech. We continue to stand by and work with our advertisers through these unfortunate and unnecessary distractions."

This isn't the first time that Fox News has dealt with an advertiser problem due to a controversy involving one of its hosts. Laura Ingraham got into trouble earlier this year when she ridiculed Parkland school shooting survivor David Hogg, prompting the student to refer to her as a "bully" and issue a call for advertisers to abandon her show.

By Matthew Rozsa

Matthew Rozsa is a staff writer at Salon. He received a Master's Degree in History from Rutgers-Newark in 2012 and was awarded a science journalism fellowship from the Metcalf Institute in 2022.

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