UPDATE, DEC. 18, 11:30 A.M.: Tucker Carlson doubled down on the controversy Monday night, telling his Fox News audience, “It’s true. The left says we have a moral obligation to admit the world’s poor–even if it makes our own country more like Tijuana is now, which is to say poorer and dirtier and more divided.
“That’s what we said. It’s true. … But precisely because it is so obviously true, saying it out loud is a threat.”
However, more advertisers are fleeing his show.
Employment website Indeed tweeted: “Hi there, Indeed is not currently advertising on Tucker Carlson Tonight and has no plans to advertise on this program in the future.”
Online design marketplace Minted tweeted that Carlson’s comments are “not consistent with the values we hold” and that the company “permanently discontinued advertising on this particular program.”
Retirement company Voya Financial tweeted it has “no scheduled spots on Tucker Carlson” and is “committed to diversity, inclusion and equality—and respect for all individuals.”
Just For Men told The Hollywood Reporter it “has no further plans to advertise on Tucker Carlson’s show. The brand is always considering ways to remain responsible, and this includes aligning with partners who share our brand values.”
Financial website NerdWallet told NBC News that it “pulled its advertising and will be reevaluating any ongoing advertising on this program.”
Jaguar Land Rover North America told HuffPost: “We have rarely appeared on the Tucker Carlson Tonight program, and do not have any future ad time allocated to it.”
Zenni Optical told HuffPost on Tuesday: “We have pulled our ads from the Tucker Carlson Tonight program effective yesterday.”
IHOP told HuffPost that its business stands for “welcoming folks from all backgrounds and beliefs into our restaurants and continually evaluate ad placements to ensure they align with our values. In this case, we will no longer be advertising on this show.”
ORIGINAL POST, DEC. 18, 5:11 A.M.: Newport Beach-based insurance giant Pacific Life will not advertise on Tucker Carlson Tonight, at least temporarily, because of comments the Fox News host made Thursday night, including a suggestion that immigration makes the United States “dirtier.”
“Nice people, no one doubts that, but as an economic matter, this is insane,” Carlson said of immigration advocates. “It’s indefensible, so nobody even tries to defend it. Instead, 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. Previous leaders of our country committed sins; we must pay for those sins by welcoming an endless chain of migrant caravans.”
Pacific Life, which advertises on no other Fox News program and has only been running spots during Carlson’s show for about a year, says in a statement that it is reevaluating its relationship in light of those comments.
“Pacific Life’s national advertising campaign runs on numerous networks and cable stations and on a variety of news, business and sports programs,” the company headquartered on Newport Center Drive says in the statement made to The Hollywood Reporter. “One of our ads appeared on Tucker Carlson’s show last night following a segment where Mr. Carlson made a number of statements regarding immigration.
“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.”
Because Media Matters for America first mad hay out of Carlson’s comments, Fox News blamed the progressive activists for the Pacific Life pullout: “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.”
One advertiser Fox News will not have to work with is SmileDirectClub, which says it will no longer runs its ads “around any political opinion shows” in light of Carlson’s comments. Nautilus Inc., the parent company for Bowflex that, like SmileDirectClub, aired ads during Carlson’s Thursday and Friday night shows, revealed it, too, is pulling future ads. “We buy media broadly across many news networks, and do not target ads based on specific programs or hosts,” reads a Nautilus statement in The Hollywood Reporter. “However, we have requested that Fox News remove our ads from airing in conjunction with Tucker Carlson Tonight in the future. Aside from our decision to remove our ads from his show, we have no other association or affiliation with Mr. Carlson.”
However, Farmers Insurance says it will not pull out because the company believes it advertises on shows that present a diversity of opinions and that no comments made on them should be construed as being endorsed by Farmers. It could not be confirmed that they then added, “We are racists, bum, buhdum, dump, dump, dump, dum.”
Matt Coker has been engaging, enraging and entertaining readers of newspapers, magazines and websites for decades. He spent the first 13 years of his career in journalism at daily newspapers before “graduating” to OC Weekly in 1995 as the paper’s first calendar editor. He went on to be managing editor, executive editor and is now senior staff writer.