A day after getting thrown off Twitter for repeatedly sharing election disinformation, MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell appeared on Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s program on Tuesday night for an extremely sympathetic interview—and proceeded to fire off bizarre conspiracies left and right.
Lindell has been one of former President Donald Trump’s biggest boosters, financially backing many of the pro-Trump lawsuits attempting to overthrow President Joe Biden’s victory. Following the insurrectionist riot incited by Trump, Lindell claimed the attack was “very peaceful” and blamed the violence on “undercover antifa dressed as Trump people.”
The pillow salesman has continued to push the unhinged theory that millions of Trump votes were flipped to Biden due to a nefarious international conspiracy involving dead Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez and corrupt voting software, opening himself up to legal threats from Dominion Voting Systems. Lindell, who says he “welcomes” a lawsuit, also personally visited the White House during Trump’s final days in office to sell him on his latest election fraud theory. (White House attorneys dismissed his claims.)
Carlson, whose show is largely propped up by MyPillow ads following an exodus of sponsors, welcomed Lindell on Tuesday night by lauding his program’s main benefactor.
“He’s one of our biggest sponsors, and we are grateful for that,” Carlson declared. “He is sponsoring free speech. But of course, the enforcers of orthodoxy are not impressed, they are enraged. For the crime of having different opinions, Mike Lindell has been banned from Twitter.”
Following its ban of Lindell, Twitter said Lindell was “permanently suspended due to repeated violations of our Civic Integrity Policy.” The new policy was enacted after the insurrection and notes that anyone who continuously shares election misinformation can be banned.
After noting that a number of retailers have also stopped carrying Lindell’s products following his conspiracy-mongering, Carlson—fresh off standing by QAnon conspiracists—painted the MyPillow founder as a free speech warrior and victim of censorship.
“It seems pretty clear they are sending a message,” the Fox host said. “People the public recognizes cannot step out of line because you might convince others to do the same. Do you take another message or do you think that’s why they’re doing this to you?”
From there, Lindell quickly turned the interview into an opportunity to make outlandish and unfounded claims while Carlson largely sat by and let his biggest sponsor go to town.
Noting that he initially got suspended by Twitter earlier this month for tweeting about election fraud, Lindell then insisted that Twitter “didn’t take it down all the way” and that someone at the social media company was actually running his account for two weeks.
“I just couldn’t do anything and they were running my Twitter like they were me,” he continued. “My friends are going you’re not tweeting very much and when you do—I said I’m not doing that so I try to take it down and I got something from Germany saying these are Twitter rules and you cannot do this, so they ran my Twitter for 14 or 15 days.”
Lindell then claimed—without a hint of evidence— that after Dominion threatened him with a lawsuit over his bogus voting software claims, “they hired hit groups and bots and trolls and went after all my vendors and box stores to cancel me out.”
While not promoting or endorsing Lindell’s remarks, Carlson framed the MyPillow chief’s conspiracies as part of normal discourse, suggesting it should be totally acceptable to “convince the audience that you’re right.”
Lindell, meanwhile, went right back down the rabbit hole.
“You’re exactly right. With this particular thing that’s going on now, I’ve been all in trying to find the machine fraud and we found it, we have the evidence,” Lindell exclaimed. “So all these outlets calling me from The Washington Post, New York Times, every outlet in the country, they go ‘Mike Lindell, there’s no evidence and he’s making fraudulent statements.’ No, I have the evidence and I dare people to put it on!”
“I dare Dominion to sue me because it would get out faster,” he added. “They don’t want to talk about it. They don’t want that!”
“No, they don’t,” Carlson muttered in response.
“They’re not making conspiracy theories go away by doing that,” he continued, before adding: “You don’t make people calm down and get reasonable and moderate by censoring them, you make them crazier. Of course!”
Over the past few weeks, Dominion and Smartmatic—another voting machine company lumped into election fraud conspiracies—have issued legal threats to a number of right-wing media outlets and Trumpworld figures, including Fox News. Dominion, meanwhile, has already filed billion-dollar defamation lawsuits against Trumpist lawyers Rudy Giuliani and Sidney Powell for promoting unfounded fraud claims about the company.
Source by www.thedailybeast.com