NSA refutes Tucker Carlson spying allegation

The National Security Agency (NSA) on Tuesday rejected claims made by Fox News host Tucker CarlsonTucker CarlsonStefanik in ad says Democrats want 'permanent election insurrection' Joint Chiefs Chairman Milley becomes lightning rod on right 90 percent of full-time Fox Corp. employees say they're fully vaccinated: executive MORE that the agency was monitoring his electronic communications and seeking to leak them in an effort to take his show off the air, calling the allegations “not true.”

“Tucker Carlson has never been an intelligence target of the Agency and the NSA has never had any plans to try to take his program off the air,” the NSA wrote in a statement shared on its Twitter page.

“NSA has a foreign intelligence mission. We target foreign powers to generate insights on foreign activities that could harm the United States. With limited exceptions (e.g. an emergency), NSA may not target a US citizen without a court order that explicitly authorizes the targeting,” the agency added.

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The Fox personality on Monday had alleged that the Biden administration was “spying” on him in an attempt to “take this show off the air,” declaring that his show had "confirmed" the claim.

He said the “war on terror is now being waged against American citizens,” adding that he heard from a “whistleblower from within the U.S. government” that the NSA was monitoring his show’s communications.

The host added that the purported individual had "repeated back to us information about a story we are working on that could have only come from my texts and emails," though Carlson did not offer more details or evidence to back up the claim.

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Carlson at the beginning of his show on Tuesday directly responded to the NSA’s statement issued the same evening, calling it “infuriatingly dishonest” and “an entire paragraph of lies.” He contended that the NSA’s statement “did not deny” that the agency has been reading his “private emails.”

"Last night on the show we made a very straightforward claim: NSA has read my private emails without my permission. Period. That's what we said. Tonight’s statement from the NSA does not deny that," he said, pointing instead to the agency noting that the host "has never been an intelligence target of the agency."

Carlson told his viewers that he asked the NSA during "a very heated conversation" 20 minutes earlier if it read his emails, a question he said it refused to answer.

When reached for comment, Fox News referred The Hill to Carlson’s remarks on the air Tuesday night.

The Hill has reached out to the NSA for further comment.

Updated: 8:59 p.m.