Tucker Carlson defends immigration comments

Fox News host Tucker CarlsonTucker CarlsonCBS employee fired for allegedly leaking Robach hot mic clip denies she leaked the tape Megyn Kelly teases interview with woman reportedly fired after leak of hot mic Epstein video Former AG Sessions enters Alabama Senate race MORE on Monday night defended his comments about immigration that have caused multiple companies to pull advertisements from his show.

Carlson has been facing criticism over his remark last week that immigration makes the U.S. "poorer and dirtier and more divided." 

"The left would very much like you to stop talking and thinking about bad decisions they’ve made over the years," Carlson said at the beginning of his show on Monday. “'Shut up,' they’re screaming, including to this show."

"Obviously, we won’t and you shouldn’t either," Carlson said.

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Carlson devoted a segment of his show to doubling down on the comment, providing statistics to back up his claim that immigrants make the U.S. "dirtier." 

As of Monday evening, four companies said they were pulling advertisements from Carlson's show over last week's comment. Advertisers with Carlson are facing pressure on social media to disengage from the show over Carlson's promotion of rhetoric that critics are calling racist and white supremacist. 

Three other companies — Farmers Insurance, Mitsubishi and Bayer/Alka Seltzer — have said they will not pull their ads at this time.

"They want us just to mouth the empty platitudes," Carlson said on Monday, referring to his critics. "Those who won’t shut up get silenced."

"You’ve seen it a million times, it happens all the time: The enforcers scream 'racist' on Twitter until everybody gets intimidated and changes the subject to the Russia investigation or some other distraction," Carlson continued. 

"It won’t work with this show," Carlson said. "We’re not intimidated. We plan to try to say what’s true until the last day."

He followed up by claiming "unregulated mass immigration has badly hurt this country’s natural landscape." In the following segment, he tracked the amount of trash that migrants have left behind in deserts close to the Southern border. 

Fox News last year dropped Bill O'Reilly's show after advertisers abandoned it following reports that O'Reilly paid hefty settlements to numerous women accusing him of sexual harassment. 

A Fox News spokesperson stood by Carlson in a statement to The Hill.

"It is a shame that left wing advocacy groups, under the guise of being supposed 'media watchdogs' weaponize social media against companies in an effort to stifle free speech. We continue to stand by and work with our advertisers through these unfortunate and unnecessary distractions," the spokesperson said.

--Updated at 10:26 p.m.