Fox News host Tucker Carlson sat down with Kurt Eichenwald, a senior writer for Newsweek, on his eponymous show Thursday night, and it's safe to say the conversation went off the rails pretty quickly. In fact, about halfway through their talk, Carlson called it "a little nutty."
The Fox anchor clearly began the interview with an ax to grind, calling into question the apparent "partisan turn" Eichenwald took when President-elect Donald Trump rose to political stardom last year.
Right off the bat, Carlson started grilling the Newsweek writer about tweets he sent out over the course of the election, most of which were clearly critical of Trump and his supporters. "That sounds pretty partisan to me," the Fox host said of the paraphrased tweets he presented to Eichenwald.
Eichenwald accused Carlson of taking his words out of context and then hoisted up a huge white binder full of paper with the title "Tucker Carlson Falsehoods" emblazoned on the front cover. Despite frequent threats to use what was in the book against Carlson, Eichenwald never actually opened the binder, so there's no telling what was in it.
"I can sit here and I can read them to you one at a time," Eichenwald threatened, holding the ominous binder in the air. "And we can talk about what you have to say, or you can give me an example of what you are talking about."
When he finally allowed Carlson enough time to speak, the Fox host asked Eichenwald about his absolutely baseless September claim that Trump was "institutionalized in a mental hospital for a nervous breakdown in 1990."
"Do you see a little irony that, on one day, you're criticizing the press for being lazy and inaccurate, and, the next day you, yourself, are being lazy and inaccurate?" Carlson asked.
Eichenwald jabbed Carlson for the way he phrased the question, saying a "real journalist" would ask why he sent the tweet instead of pressing him on his apparent bias.
At that point, Eichenwald delved into an exhaustive explanation, sharing myriad details about his history of covering the president-elect, ultimately telling Carlson that, at some point, he obtained medical records showing the billionaire businessman was once on a "heavy prescription for an amphetamine derivative."
But Carlson interjected: "Was he in a mental hospital or not in 1990? You allege that he was. Was he or wasn't he? He wasn't, was he?"
The two men went back and forth, speaking over one another for several minutes, as Eichenwald refused to answer the question but instead chose to filibuster about how Carlson wouldn't let him answer the question.
"If you don't like the answer, don't have guests, but I would really like to answer your question," he told the Fox host, despite the fact that he never did answer the question being asked.
From there, the interview took a bizarre turn. After Carlson asked his question once more — "Was he in a mental hospital in 1990 as you allege or was he not?" — and gave Eichenwald room to talk, the Newsweek writer shot back, "You are trying to stop me from giving the answer."
With the discussion clearly going nowhere, Carlson admitted their conversation was "a little nutty," later adding, "I have never had an interview like this in my life."
"I can't imagine negotiating something with you," Carlson said, laughing hysterically. "I would go crazy."
In the final moments of the interview, Eichenwald turned randomly to "a message I have got for people from the CIA," which over the weekend reported that Russia hacked the election. But when Carlson asked him what the message was, he never actually shared it.
Eichenwald later took to Twitter to try to relay the message he failed to deliver to Carlson but said he could not find the note that had the message on it.
Sigh. I can't find what I wrote down. But he said the ppl who gather and analyze intel at great sacrifice deserve to be honored, not...— Kurt Eichenwald (@Kurt Eichenwald)1481861054.0
In response to that tweet, one cruel Twitter user sent a flashing gif to the Newsweek reporter, saying he deserved a seizure for his comments. Eichenwald's wife replied to that tweet, saying her husband suffered a seizure as a result of the gif.
@jew_goldstein This is his wife, you caused a seizure. I have your information and have called the police to report the assault.— Kurt Eichenwald (@Kurt Eichenwald)1481862679.0
Eichenwald has not been on Twitter since his wife's tweet was published late Thursday night.