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ADL CEO asks advertisers to boycott Tucker Carlson, Fox News

Anti-Defamation League (ADL) CEO Jonathan Greenblatt on Tuesday asked advertisers to pull their ads from Fox News and its prime-time show “Tucker CarlsonTucker CarlsonTucker Carlson's show does dramatic reading of Stacey Abrams romance novel Pollster Frank Luntz: Trump's 'Big Lie' is working, may cost GOP votes Fox Corp CEO Lachlan Murdoch: Fox won back ratings after second impeachment trial MORE Tonight” in a speech to the World Federation of Advertisers.

“Choose to pause or even pull your ads not just from problematic programs but altogether from networks that don’t respect all people or that repeat baseless conspiracies that endanger all of us,” Greenblatt said.

Greenblatt was referring to comments Carlson made in a Fox News segment less than two weeks ago when the Fox host said that Democrat immigration policies could be designed to dilute the voting power of Americans.

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Shortly after that segment aired, Greenblatt and the ADL said that Carlson needed to be fired because his comments mirrored a white supremacist tenet called the “great replacement” theory.

Fox Corp. CEO and Executive Chairman Lachlan Murdoch defended Carlson not long after the ADL issued its initial call for his ouster.

In a letter to the ADL, Murdoch pointed to Carlson’s disclaimer during the segment that he was addressing voting rights issues, not the racial makeup of U.S. society. 

In his speech Tuesday, Greenblatt referenced that letter, saying that while Murdoch may claim Carlson does not embrace white supremacist tropes, the host's message “was not lost on those white supremacists and bigots who are now applauding him for embracing their talking points.”

“Now, I don’t need to tell you how ugly this rhetoric is, especially when it is repeated by someone with millions of viewers across the country,” Greenblatt added. “But it's also dangerous, literally a prompt to violence.”

Greenblatt also said advertisers and others should work to marginalize comments like Carlson’s that are outside the mainstream of U.S. society, saying that "fringe theories" need to stay on the fringe.

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“As an industry, you are uniquely positioned to push these networks — whether mass media or social media — to do their utmost to ensure that hatred and conspiracy theories are not amplified,” Greenblatt said. “Yes, the First Amendment allows for people to espouse fringe theories, but we need to keep them on the fringe.”

After the controversy first erupted, some other prominent Jewish leaders pushed back on the ADL’s critiques of Carlson.

“Fox is not an anti-Semitic network,” said former ADL President Abraham Foxman recently said. “It’s a lot of things, but it’s not an anti-Semitic network, and it’s certainly not an anti-Israel network.”

In addition, The Jerusalem Post reported that approximately 1,500 rabbis wrote Greenblatt a public letter stating that the ADL’s white supremacist accusations against Carlson were “grossly misplaced.”