Vanity Fair published a Sunday interview in which Rachel Maddow, MSNBC’s host, praised Tucker Carlson, Fox News host, in a rare and unifying moment. Maddow’s first TV job was with Carlson when he worked at MSNBC in the early days of her career. Maddow was a part of Carlson’s “Tucker” series 17 years ago.
“Tucker is doing well right now… But take a look at Tucker’s entire career. His 11 o’clock MSNBC show was the first show that I worked on. It is a show that no one remembers. He was always in the business and always had talent. This was his moment.”
Maddow responded to a question Maddow had about Carlson’s New York Times investigation into how he “weaponized viewers’ fears and grievances in order to create what might be the most racist cable news show history.”
“I was more interested in Tucker’s ideas and how they interacted with the growth in the authoritarian left in the Republican Party than that question which was obviously the main thrust of the reporting. I was also curious to see how they explained why it works.”
Maddow stated that she doesn’t automatically reject Fox News hosts.
When you think of baseball players who are very competitive and are trying to win, which can sometimes be bitter rivalries, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you don’t pay attention to their pitching techniques. It’s not difficult to respect the game in terms of those who do well and those who excel at it.
Roger Ailes was my professional friend because of that. I needed tips to improve my TV skills. He was open to talking to me about my strengths and weaknesses to help me improve.
This was not a good idea for liberal Nandini Jammi who tweeted:
Deeply unsurprised to learn that Rachel Maddow is a member of Tucker Carlson’s protection racket. pic.twitter.com/T8gmH0obLD
— Nandini Jammi (@nandoodles) August 8, 2022
It is nice to see Maddow complimenting her competitors on policy. They disagree about almost everything related to politics. She acknowledged Tucker’s “dangerous” ideas. But that is only her opinion. She didn’t stop calling Tucker “talented” or mentioning that she had a professional friendship with Roger Ailes.
Joe Biden claimed that he would bring unity back to the United States when he ran for president in 2020. Maddow displayed more unity with her polar opposite than Biden’s entire presidency. This was a good thing in a time of so much division.