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Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham mocked the harrowing police testimony about the Capitol riot with snickers and a 'best political performance' trophy

Business Insider logo Business Insider 7/28/2021 mjankowicz@businessinsider.com (Mia Jankowicz)
Tucker Carlson posing for the camera: A composite image of Laura Ingraham and Tucker Carlson on their Fox News shows on July 27, 2021. Fox News © Fox News A composite image of Laura Ingraham and Tucker Carlson on their Fox News shows on July 27, 2021. Fox News
  • The Fox News hosts mocked the testimony at Tuesday's January 6 committee hearing.
  • Carlson snickered at one officer's testimony, while Ingraham gave out "awards" for "performances."
  • Both hosts selectively used footage to exclude testimony about racial abuse and violence.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Fox News hosts Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham had a decidedly sarcastic reaction to the harrowing Tuesday testimonies of police who defended the Capitol from pro-Trump supporters on January 6.

Officers including Harry Dunn, Aquilino Gonell, Michael Fanone, and Daniel Hodges had described racial abuse, beatings, and fears for their lives at the the first hearing of the House Select Committee investigating the January 6 riot.

Fox News' leading opinion personalities had a deeply skeptical reading of the testimonies.

'Today's best performances'

On "The Ingraham Angle," Ingraham introduced "the Angle awards for today's best performances."

Earlier that day, officers had recalled disturbing experiences of the riot. Dunn, a Black man, recalled being called the N-word by rioters, while Gonell, an Iraq war veteran, said that he believed he was going to die during the attack.

Gonell also described the use of baseball bats, hockey sticks, a rebar, and a flagpole as weapons that day. He added: "No matter if it is a pen, the way they were using these items, it was to hurt officers."

Ingraham's show honed in on the pen comment alone, displaying a graphic of a trophy with "Best Exaggerated Performance" emblazoned on it.

"The winner is Aquilino Gonell, who thinks the pen is literally mightier than the sword," said Ingraham.

a man wearing a suit and tie: Private First Class Harry Dunn of the Capitol Police wipes tears away at the House Select Committee investigating the January 6 attack. Jim Lo Scalzo-Pool/Getty Images © Jim Lo Scalzo-Pool/Getty Images Private First Class Harry Dunn of the Capitol Police wipes tears away at the House Select Committee investigating the January 6 attack. Jim Lo Scalzo-Pool/Getty Images

Ingraham also mocked Dunn with a graphic of a trophy that read "Best Political Performance," saying: "The award for blatant use of party politics when facts fail, the Angle award goes to Capitol Police Officer Harry Dunn."

Dunn told the hearing that he tries to keep politics out of his job, but he mentioned his own vote when he tried to reason with rioters who said that Joe Biden had stolen the election.

"I responded, 'Well, I voted for Joe Biden. Does my vote not count? Am I nobody?'" he said. "That prompted a torrent of racial epithets."

Ingraham cut the clip before Dunn's mention of the racial abuse. She also took aim at Fanone, who at one point in his testimony slammed his hand on the podium in frustration - giving him "Best Action Performance," which can be seen here:

Ingraham also "awarded" Reps. Adam Schiff and Adam Kinzinger, both of whom reacted emotionally to the testimonies, with "Best Dramatic Performance."

'It's not Fallujah'

On "Tucker Carlson Tonight," Carlson took issue with several testimonies.

At the hearing, Gonell - a former Iraq war veteran - had said in a tearful speech that "on January 6th for the first time, I was more afraid to work at the Capitol than my entire deployment to Iraq."

a close up of a man: CapitolPolice officer Aquilino Gonell wipes his eye as he watches a video being displayed during a House select committee hearing on the January 6 attack on Capitol Hill. Jim Bourg/Pool via AP) © Jim Bourg/Pool via AP) CapitolPolice officer Aquilino Gonell wipes his eye as he watches a video being displayed during a House select committee hearing on the January 6 attack on Capitol Hill. Jim Bourg/Pool via AP)

Carlson responded, saying: "Actually what happened on January 6, according to the video we do have, does not look a lot like Iraq. It's not Fallujah." He played footage of a relatively quiet segment of the Capitol invasion, with protesters milling peacefully about the rotunda.

Extensive footage exists of much more violent moments.

Fanone also excoriated the "indifference" shown to officers who defended the Capitol that day, adding: "I've been left with the psychological trauma and the emotional anxiety of having survived such a horrific event,"

Carlson outright laughed at this. The moment can be seen here:

Carlson went on to suggest that Fanone should have experienced trauma from the protests in Washington, DC, last year, when St. John's Episcopal Church sustained fire damage and officers were hurt.

Carlson and some Republican lawmakers have frequently drawn comparisons between violent Black Lives Matter protests and the Capitol riot, suggesting a double standard in how they have been investigated.

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