Duckworth: Tucker Carlson ‘Singled Me Out Because I Am Asian-American’

Tuesday on CNN’s “Newsroom,” Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) said Fox News host Tucker Carlson called her a “moron” and a “coward,” because she is “Asian-American.”

Host Brianna Keilar said, “I want to ask you, turning now to something else that is happened since we last spoke, about the attacks on you by Fox News host Tucker Carlson. We spoke a lot about them on this show, and he made it a point to go after you when you said it was a discussion. There was a discussion to be had when it came to removing monuments of American leaders and asked specifically about George Washington and did not agree to the idea of removing a monument, but you said there is a national discussion. He called you a moron. But I think what was more significant was that he called a coward, he said that you, among other Democrats, hate America. He questioned your patriotism as a combat veteran who lost your legs in Iraq. And I just wonder what your reaction is not only to that but also the fact that we are hearing these kinds of attacks on people who are clearly patriots more and more, and I wonder what you think about that.”

Duckworth said, “When you love the Constitution, and you love this country as much as I do, so much so that you’re willing to lay down your life to protect and defend her, then you must agree to defend the rights of the likes of Tucker Carlson to lie about you. I truly believe in freedom of speech. It is enshrined in the Constitution. Of course, I don’t want statues of George Washington torn down any more than I would want the Purple Heart that he founded ripped from my chest, but I will defend the right for Tucker Carlson to be the obnoxious person that he is and to lie about me because that’s what our country is all about. And if you truly love America and you truly love the Constitution, then you have to stand up for people’s right to express their opinions, even loathsome ones that are lies that you don’t agree with. I’m to this day I’m willing if they want to call me back up and putt the uniform on, and I’ll go back to combat to defend his right to be odious.”

Keilar said, “Do you think he singled you out because your name is in the VP mix, and he’s trying to cut down what is clearly a strength when it comes to your resume?”

Duckworth said, “I think he singled me out because I’m Asian-American and I look different. Asian-Americans have always been the other in our society.”

She added, “He doesn’t want America to be as diverse as it should be. In fact, he used I think ten words of the white supremacy statement on that. So this is what they do, they go after your strength. But they also single others —folks to try to make them others. My family has fought and defended this nation over 200 years. I am, to this day, willing to defend his right to have his opinions.”

Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN

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