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Winning the Messaging Battle, Part I

Schumer Loses It Over McCarthy Giving J6 Footage to Carlson

AP Photo/Hans Pennink

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer blasted House Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s decision to release footage from the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol to Fox News’s Tucker Carlson, arguing the move will “jeopardize the safety” of lawmakers and Capitol staff “for political purposes.”


In a letter to colleagues sent Wednesday, the New York Democrat said McCarthy is “needlessly exposing the Capitol complex to one of the worst security risks since 9/11.”

He claimed the 44,000 hours of footage is a “treasure trove of closely held information about how the Capitol complex is protected and its public release would compromise the safety of the Legislative Branch and allow those who want to commit another attack to learn how Congress is safeguarded.”

Schumer said McCarthy doesn’t have the right to endanger lawmakers and staff by releasing the footage, which he believes would reveal “the location of security cameras across the Capitol grounds.” 

He added: “It also risks exposing the carefully laid out and highly guarded plans for the continuity of government, intended to preserve our democracy in the event of an attack.” 

In a fundraising email to supporters, McCarthy said he was following up on a campaign promise by releasing the footage.

“Patriot, you deserve the facts — all of the facts,” the email states. “I promised I would give you the truth regarding January 6th, and now I am delivering. I have released the full 44,000 hours of uncut camera surveillance footage.”

By giving it exclusively to Carlson, however, McCarthy showed it was a political stunt, Schumer argued. 


“Speaker McCarthy laid bare that this sham is simply about pandering to MAGA election deniers, not the truth,” he said. “Tucker Carlson has no fidelity to the truth or facts and has used his platform to promote the Big Lie, distort reality, and espouse bogus conspiracy theories about January 6." 

He continued: “If the past is any indication, Tucker Carlson will select only clips that he can use to twist the facts to sow doubt of what happened on January 6 and feed into the propaganda he’s already put on Fox News’ air.” 

Carlson said his producers are combing through the material and will discuss findings next week. 

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