Source: Business Insider
Fox News host Tucker Carlson suggested this week that the US government's involvement in Ukraine is aimed at deposing Russian leader Vladimir Putin and is meant as "payback for the 2016 election."
"We don't arm Ukraine so we can help the Ukrainians. They are merely unfortunate pawns in all of this...We arm Ukraine so that we can punish Russia. Why? For stealing Hillary Clinton's coronation."
During his show on Monday night, Carlson baselessly claimed that "the war in Ukraine is designed to cause regime change in Moscow."
"We don't arm Ukraine so we can help the Ukrainians. They are merely unfortunate pawns in all of this," the Fox News host said. "We arm Ukraine so that we can punish Russia. Why? For stealing Hillary Clinton's coronation."
"They want to topple the Russian government. That would be payback for the 2016 election. So, this is the logical, maybe the inevitable, end-stage of Russiagate," he added.
By "Russiagate," the Fox News host referred to a high-profile scandal concerning Russian meddling in the 2016 election and former President Donald Trump's victory that year.
In 2019, an investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller found that the Russian government had interfered in the 2016 election in an elaborate attempt to ruin presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's chances of winning. However, there is no evidence that any aid currently being sent to Ukraine is linked to the "Russiagate" scandal.
Carlson's stance on the Ukraine war runs counter to what the Biden administration has said about the conflict. For one, Vice President Kamala Harris said in April: "Let me be very clear. We are not into regime change. And that is not our policy. Period."
Carlson has been known to echo pro-Putin talking points on his show. In March, he was also named in a leaked Kremlin war memo as a prime subject to be featured on Russian state media.
On Monday, Carlson noted that if the US government wanted to save Ukraine, it would "push for a settlement now."
"You would have done it two months ago, but they're not doing that," he added. "They've rejected it out of hand."
Ukraine has pursued preliminary negotiations with Russia for peace, despite Putin's hesitance. However, these talks have hit an impasse, with Ukraine saying that the Russians taking Mariupol would end any possible peace talks, and Putin separately vowing to pursue war.
President Joe Biden has recently urged Congress to pass a $33 billion Ukraine aid package. The US has also been helping to arm Ukraine's forces by sending over Stinger missiles and other forms of military assistance.
The US government also announced several aid packages for Ukraine on April 14 and April 21, along with Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen's pledge of $500 million to fund the country's administration.
In response to this assistance, Carlson suggested that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's finances be audited.