Fox News host Tucker Carlson argued that Democrats are using COVID-19 and the unknown risks of the new Omicron variant as an excuse to seize more power and trample on Americans’ civil liberties, raising the specter of a strict lockdown like the one in Australia.
The anchor opened his top-rated cable show, Tucker Carlson Tonight, on Wednesday by mocking the Biden Administration for imposing a travel ban on the citizens of Mozambique, where no Omicron cases have been identified so far, as part of a possible mix-up with the African country of Botswana, where two people may have contracted the new COVID variant.
‘Either way, Mozambique and Botswana don’t even share a border, so people in Mozambique were highly confused and probably a little hurt,’ Carlson remarked.
He then took aim at Dr Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases – whom he compared to Benito Mussolini earlier this week – calling him out for dodging an African reporter’s question about the inexplicable travel ban targeting Mozambique.
Fox News’ Tucker Carlson on Wednesday accused Democrats of using the Omicron variant of COVID-19 as a pretext to trample Americans’ civil liberties
Omicron was first detected in South Africa earlier this month, igniting worldwide panic and leading to a new round of restrictions
Dr Angelique Coetzee, chair of the South African Medical Association and the first person to spot the new variant in a patient, said her patients infected with Omicron reported different and much milder symptoms, including tiredness, muscle aches, a sore head and a dry cough. But none reported the tell-tale symptoms of a loss of smell or taste or breathing difficulties
‘So as of right now, we still don’t know why there is a White House travel ban on Mozambique,’ Carlson told his audience. ‘Presumably, the answer is because it’s in Africa and Africa is where all of this started.’
Carlson then brought up Dr Angelique Coetzee, chair of the South African Medical Association and the first person to spot the new variant in a patient, who the Fox News presenter said has been ‘horrified’ by politicians in the US and other countries who have taken extreme measures to try to contain Omicron.
‘I have been stunned at the response,’ Coetzee wrote in an article for the DailyMail.com. ‘No one here in South Africa is known to have been hospitalized with the Omicron variant, nor has anyone here believed to have fallen seriously ill with it.’
Carlson reserved some of his harshest words for Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, after playing a clip of the public servant talking about her agency’s plan to expand its variant surveillance program at some of the nation’s busiest airports to better detect Omicron.
Carlson slammed Dr Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, for dodging questions about a travel ban on the Omicron-free Mozambique
According to Walensky, the program operating at JFK, Newark, San Francisco and Atlanta airports allows the CDC to test more arriving international passengers for COVID, and collect traveler information to enhance contact tracing if an Omicron case is identified.
Carlson argued that so far, Walensky’s tenure at the CDC has been ‘a failure,’ but because she has proven herself a ‘loyal Democrat,’ she has been reward with ‘the powers of an intelligence agency.’
Carlson suggested that if Americans continue to tolerate this supposed abuse of their rights and liberties, the US could end up like Australia, which has banned travelers from nine countries, most of them in Africa, and imposed a three-day quarantine on all international arrivals.
To drive his point home, the Fox News presenter brought up a recent incident involving three people who escaped from one of Australia’s main quarantine facilities for travelers arriving in the country from abroad, which he labeled a ‘concentration camp.’
‘In case you’re wondering, doesn’t seem like any of these escapees actually have COVID,’ he said. ‘There’s no other evidence they were infecting anybody. But it didn’t matter. They’re supposed to be behind bars now they’re not, so police set up roadblocks, checkpoints brought in the dogs. It’s a democracy. Doesn’t seem very healthy’
Carlson listed several other Western democracies where governments have been cracking down on their unvaccinated citizens, including Austria and Canada.
‘This is where we’re heading, and we’re heading there very, very fast,’ he warned.
Carlson predicted that Democrats will use COVID as a pretext to crush the opposition ahead of the midterm elections next year, unless someone – possibly a new ‘civil rights party’- stops the country’s descent toward tyranny, he said.
‘But make no mistake, unless someone stops it very soon, it is coming,’ the anchor cautioned.
Carlson accused the Biden Administration of failing to push for the development of medications to treat COVID
On Wednesday, Fauci announced that the first known case of the Omicron variant in the US had been detected in California.
Fauci said the patient was ‘fully vaccinated,’ experienced only mild symptoms and was on the mend.
Carlson said what this case should teach us is that even the most stringent COVID restrictions, including wearing masks, social distancing and vaccinations cannot stop the spread of COVID.
‘So maybe the lesson here is viruses are very hard to stop,’ he said. ‘Sometimes they’re virtually impossible to stop because they spread with remarkable efficiency.’
A second person in Minnesota was found to have contracted Omicron on Thursday. The fully vaccinated man had traveled to New York City last week.
Carlson claimed that Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was spying on Americans after the public health official’s recent comments announcing the expansion of the CDC’s variant surveillance program at airports
Carlson also blasted President Joe Biden for not doing enough to push for the development of medications to treat vulnerable people for COVID, and instead waging a war on unvaccinated Americans.
‘On the basis of no demonstrated threat to public health whatsoever, the Biden Administration is once again locking down the country and persecuting its perceived political opponents, otherwise known as the unvaccinated,’ the anchor fumed.
The main thrust of Carlson’s impassioned soliloquy is that given COVID’s mutability and staying power, there would be no end in sight to lockdowns and other restrictions, to the detriment of democracy.
Carlson also took the left-wing media to task for failing to ask Biden and his health officials tough questions, and instead using their platforms to spread fear about the threat of the new virus variant with little scientific evidence to back it up.
‘Meanwhile, the Biden Administration says it may force everyone entering the country, even American citizens, even people who are vaccinated, to enter some kind of mandatory quarantine when they get here,’ Carlson said.
The host remarked sarcastically that undocumented immigrants who ‘sneak though over the Mexican border’ are not required to get vaccinated, or stay in quarantine.