National Security Agency’s (NSA) inspector general will investigate if the agency “improperly” spied on Tucker Carlson, who reportedly was attempting to interview Russian President Vladimir Putin.
“The inspector general for the NSA is opening an investigation into claims the agency ‘improperly targeted’ a ‘member of the U.S. media’ aka Tucker Carlson,” the Hollywood Reporter tweeted.
The investigation comes after Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) sent a letter August 3 to Director of National Intelligence Avril D. Haines to request a “formal inquiry into allegations that Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s communications were subject to NSA collection, and that Mr. Carlson’s identity was ‘unmasked’ component to that collection.”
“Similarly, media reports that Mr. Carlson was unmasked by a government agency or official have only fueled the perception that unmasking is being used as a political hammer or to satisfy curiosity,” Rubio continued. “As such, it is essential that the IC – under your leadership – hold itself to account if misconduct has occurred, and convincingly reassure an American public increasingly attuned to the perception of widespread misconduct where it has not occurred.”
Rubio’s letter is in reference to Carlson’s claims on June 28 that the NSA was spying on him and those associated with his program, which Carlson stated was revealed through a whistleblower within the government by which particular information via text and emails were looped back to Carlson. Carlson insists the details in the communications only could have been known through someone inspecting his texts and emails.
The Fox News host also stated his team had filed a Freedom of Information Act request and called on the federal government to cease the behavior immediately.
The NSA issued a rare statement July 29, denying Carlson was a “target,” while not mentioning whether the show’s communications were being or had been collected.
A statement from NSA regarding recent allegations: pic.twitter.com/vduE6l6YWg
— NSA/CSS (@NSAGov) June 30, 2021
The scandal caused House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) to ask Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) in July to investigate if NSA had spied on Carlson.
“Now, there is a public report that NSA read the emails of Fox News host Tucker Carlson. Although NSA publicly denied targeting Carlson, I have serious questions regarding this matter that must be answered,” McCarthy’s press release said.