Skip to main content

Tucker Carlson talks immigration, Christianity in Calgary; meets with Danielle Smith


A controversial right-wing commentator held the attention of thousands of Calgarians, including the premier, Wednesday in Calgary.

Tucker Carlson was fired by Fox News last year after a settlement was reached over false election claims.

He's often accused of spreading dangerous rhetoric and misinformation.

Four thousand people headed to the Telus Convention Centre for his afternoon speech and two Q-and-A sit-downs.

Over 90 minutes, the polarizing figure took repeated aim at the Canadian federal government and the need to "liberate" the country's citizens.

"You should recognize what is happening to you," Carlson said.

"This is not a political debate on which you've been invited to participate. This is a destruction of you and your culture and beliefs and of your children and of your future as a country."

Among Carlson's major gripes were Canada's immigration policy, its "disgusting" media and gender ideology outlook.

He criticized MAID, something he referred to as a "genocide," and policy around safe drug supply, accusing the B.C. premier of purposely trying to give children fentanyl.

Among the most attacked, according to the media personality? Christians.

"If you're hassling with that group," he said, "maybe you've got another agenda we should be concerned about."

Smith speaks

Despite a high-energy, often angry rallying attempt by Carlson, the room's temperature decreased considerably when Smith was welcomed onstage.

No space in the centre was reserved for media outlets, but Alberta's premier immediately addressed that there might be reporters in the room: a statement met with heavy boos.

"I know that there are representatives from mainstream media here and they're going to ask me if I agree with every single word (Carlson) said in the previous panel," Smith said.

"So what I often say, especially when I'm being interviewed by the CBC, is look: I don't agree with every word you say either, obviously. But I accept interviews and have conversations with everyone."

Smith told Carlson she, too, isn't proud of the way the feds handled COVID-19 protests and subsequent arrests.

She also explained how she believes the power grid is in serious danger under the Justin Trudeau Liberals, and how she thinks Alberta "should double down and decide we are going to double our oil and gas" output.

Cheers rang out when Smith told Carlson she's trying to get Trudeau "fired, and would love your help on that."

Take Back base

The event was promoted by political lobbying group Take Back Alberta and attended by several United Conservative MLAs.

A Mount Royal University political scientist believes the premier's appearance was meant to pander to the further right portion of her base.

"I think she's very cognizant of keeping them onside," Lori Williams said.

"(That's) stacked against the reality that this is going to worry some moderate conservatives in terms of what Danielle Smith believes, where she sits and what she endorses."

Carlson, who said he came to Canada to "liberate" the country, has made a career over polarizing and even hateful views, Williams said.

"He has been associated with racist views, really central in amping up concern around white replacement theory, critical race theory and so forth.

"He's trafficking in conspiracy theory."

Carlson facts

Carlson was ousted from Fox in late April, less than a week after the company agreed to pay Dominion Voting Systems nearly $800 million to settle a defamation case.

Fox provided no explanation for the firing, but reports of damaging text messages and other statements Carlson made during his employment have since piled up.

He had been the network's top-rated host before his firing, and his political theories grew to define Fox over recent years.

Carlson had been accused of defending a white supremacist theory that claims white people are being "replaced" by people of colour.

In 2021, the Anti-Defamation League said Carlson attempted to dismiss the theory while endorsing it by calling it "a voting rights question."

Carlson said: "The left and all the little gatekeepers on Twitter become literally hysterical if you use the term 'replacement,' if you suggest that the Democratic Party is trying to replace the current electorate of voters now casting ballots with new people, more obedient voters from the Third World."

He added that he had "less political power because they are importing a brand new electorate."

He didn't specifically mention the theory in Calgary, but did talk about how Canadians are "losing their voting power" as more immigrants come to the country.

Carlson has also spread misinformation about Russia's war in Ukraine and the attack on the U.S. Capitol.

On Wednesday, he said he had a gut feeling the latter was a "set-up."

(With files from The Canadian Press and The Associated Press) Top Stories

Stay Connected