During a segment of his Monday night Fox News show, Tucker Carlson doubled down on calling out left-wing corporate lobbyist Frank Luntz, this time for his personal, and murky, relationship with top members of the GOP leadership.
"Luntz lobbies, he's not a registered lobbyist, but he lobbies on behalf of some of the world's most left-wing corporations. A lot of people do that. Here's the interesting thing about Frank Luntz, at the same time he's doing that, he also advises the leadership of the Republican party." While outlining Luntz’s relationship to major tech corporations, Tucker slammed Luntz’s relationship to Big Pharma companies, "So Frank Luntz works for Google and Nike and Delta airlines among many others."
"Several years ago he advised the makers of Oxycontin, on how to blame rural Americans as thousands of young people in rural America dropped dead of opioid OD’s. Frank Luntz did that. So he's not someone that normal people would go to for advice. And if you were running the Republican party, you definitely wouldn't because Frank Luntz is effectively a Democrat."
Tucker added, "We know this. Because we've listened to him now, Luntz typically launders his own opinions through the pseudo-scientific focus groups that he conducts, but in real life, his views make no mistake, bear no resemblance whatsoever to the views of actual Republican voters. So again, the question is how did someone like this wind up with so much influence in the Republican party?"
"Why do Republican officials listen more carefully to Frank Luntz than they listened to their own voters? That is a mystery. Why do people have asked that question in Washington? And as of three days ago, here was our best guess for why. So why does Frank Luntz remain a fixture in Republican politics at a time when the companies he works for are opposed to the Republican party, explicitly so?" Carlson continued.
"Well in part, because he is particularly close to the house minority leader, Kevin McCarthy of California, and has been since McCarthy entered politics. In an interview earlier this year, Luntz described Kevin McCarthy as a personal friend and that relationship gives Franklin's outsized influence over the Republican party's policy positions."
Tucker went on to say that "Luntz is a personal friend of Kevin McCarthy's, who's the top ranking Republican in the house. That's what we said. It turns out we didn't know the half of it. Over the weekend we got a call from a source who said that, in fact, Frank Luntz and Kevin McCarthy are not simply friends, they're roommates."
"Kevin McCarthy lives in Frank Luntz’s apartment in downtown Washington. That's what we were told. And honestly, we did not believe it. The top Republican in the house lives with the Google lobbyist? Come on, come on. Even by the sleazy and corrupt standards of politics in Washington that did not seem possible."
Carlson said in disbelief, "...it sounded like a joke, but this morning, since we heard it, we called to check with Kevin McCarthy spokeswoman. And when we raised this sheet all but chuckled at the suggestion. Now, when he's in Washington, she told us Kevin McCarthy rents hotel rooms, or sleeps in his office in the Capitol. He certainly isn't living with Frank Luntz."
"Okay. And that seemed logical to us, but we did press a little bit because we got the tip from someone we consider reliable and we just wanted to be sure. So the spokeswoman said she would get back to us."
"Two hours later, we got this text, 'Following up on our conversation from earlier today because of the pandemic. McCarthy has rented a room in Washington at a fair market price from Frank Luntz.' So actually the top Republican in the house does live with someone who lobbies for Google. Mystery solved, not only are they friends, they're roommates. So now you know why they listened to Frank Luntz, but they don't listen to you no matter how cynical you become lately, watching Washington, that's still a pretty remarkable thing to learn, but other questions remained."
Carlson then continued onto question this arrangement in the backdrop of Covid related government guidelines, "For example, what did the Corona virus pandemic have to do with Kevin McCarthy's choice of apartment? The Chinese unleash a virus on the world, and all of a sudden congressional leaders have to live with Frank Luntz? Was there a CDC guidance on that? If so, we missed it. If anything, COVID increased the number of housing options in Washington, DC in some places, apartment prices fell, but not in Frank Luntzs building Frank Luntz lives in one of the most expensive buildings in Washington, we pulled the deed and we checked. The estimate that we found shows that Luntz’s condo in the fashionable Penn quarter part of the city, would likely rent for over $5,000 a month."
"That's the quote 'fair market price,' Tucker said, "So the question is, is Kevin McCarthy paying $5,000 every month to Frank Luntz to live in his house? We would love to know the answer. We asked several times of his office, and no one got back to us with an answer. If Kevin McCarthy isn't paying market price, he is likely violating house ethics rules on taking gifts."
"And someday," Carlson continued, "We have no doubt, we will find out exactly what he is paying. But no matter what he's paying, as far as we're concerned, the price of the apartment is not the crime here. Kevin McCarthy's real crime is mocking his voters. Kevin McCarthy promises Republicans he shares their values, he tells them he's on their side."
"He says that he will fight for them against permanent Washington, the forces that would like to destroy their lives. Voters believe Kevin McCarthy when he says this, they send him back to office every two years, they send him money. And at the end of the day, Kevin McCarthy goes home to Frank Luntz’s apartment in Penn quarter, and he laughs about it."