House Democrats and Republicans disagreeing is hardly a breaking headline. The close majority in the House of Representatives has caused a troubling conundrum for both parties since while Democrats hold the majority, it’s close enough that they’re concerned they could lose that majority in the upcoming midterm elections.
The House Democrats, led by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, have done their darndest to protect the progressive agenda, but not even their liberally heroic efforts could defend the Biden administration from what might be the current president’s biggest gaffe yet: an investigation into one of the conservative’s most loved commentators, Fox News’s Tucker Carlson.
News broke via Carlson himself just days ago that the anchor believed he was being spied on by the NSA, which caused a hailstorm of objections by Americans, still incensed by the past year of COVID-19 restrictions and an election many believe was tampered with.
Thanks to this revelation, House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) stepped up and decided to do something about it, making it clear that the Biden administration might have the executive branch and majorities in both houses of Congress, but Republicans would not stand by and watch their rights trampled.
On Wednesday, McCarthy demanded that an investigation be launched to suss out the accusations:
“Yesterday we heard from a whistleblower within the U.S. government who reached out to warn us that the NSA, the National Security Agency, is monitoring our electronic communications and is planning to leak them in an attempt to take this show off the air,” Carlson said on Monday.
The Fox host went on to say that the whistleblower offered the information to them from a position of power where he was in the know about this type of investigation and said that the government agency was working on a story that was sourced directly from Carlson’s texts and emails, which is, as one can imagine if they don’t know for sure, quite the violation of privacy and overreach on the part of the government.
“There’s no other possible source for that information, period. … The NSA captured that information without our knowledge and did it for political reasons. The Biden administration is spying on us.”
This information didn’t sit well with McCarthy, who is the House’s ranking Republican. McCarthy said that this isn’t the first information of this type to cross his desk, saying that he’s noticed a “disturbing trend” with the National Security Agency (NSA) under the Biden administration, according to The Daily Wire.
McCarthy said that he sent a letter to Secretary of Defense Austin voicing concern over “the politicization of the Agency through the sidelining of Michael Ellis as NSA General Counsel.” The Republican went on to say that he requested that Ellis be reinstated and that he believed there was a damaging false narrative circulating about the former official. He also said that it had come to his attention that NSA has refused to deliver information requested to Republican Members on the House Intelligence Committee after requests were sent by those who are trying to fulfill their responsibilities.
“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 added. “Given this disturbing trend, I’ve asked HPSCI Ranking Member Devin Nunes to investigate and find answers on behalf of the American people. The NSA cannot be used as a political instrument, and House Republicans will ensure accountability and transparency.”
McCarthy’s scathing diatribe against the NSA prompted a carefully worded statement from the agency:
On June 28, 2021, Tucker Carlson alleged that the National Security Agency has been “monitoring our electronic communications and is planning to leak them in an attempt to take this show off the air.” This allegation is untrue. Tucker Carlson has never been an intelligence target of the Agency and the NSA has never had any plans to try to take his program off the air.
NSA has a foreign intelligence mission. We target foreign powers to generate insights on foreign activities that could harm the United States. With limited exceptions (e.g. an emergency), NSA may not target a US citizen without a court order that explicitly authorizes the targeting.
This didn’t sit well with Carlson, who believes to have irrefutable proof that they are indeed spying on him. He called the statement “an entire paragraph of lies written purely for the benefit of the intel community’s lackeys at CNN and MSNBC.”Carlson responded to the NSA’s statement by saying that it was “an entire paragraph of lies written purely for the benefit of the intel community’s lackeys at CNN and MSNBC.”