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As of Dec. 18, Takeda, CareerBuilder, TD Ameritrade, ScotteVest, United Explorer, Just for Men, Voya, Zenni Optical, IHOP, Jaguar, Pacific Life, Indeed, Bowflex, SmileDirectClub, NerdWallet, Minted and Ancestry have all dropped advertisements earmarked for Tucker Carlson Tonight, reports Jon Levine and Itay Hod for TheWrap.
At least 17 advertisers have canceled advertisements after the Fox News host said in a show last Thursday that immigrants to the United States made the country “poorer” and “dirtier.”
Takeda Pharmaceutical Company, CareerBuilder, TD Ameritrade, Just For Men, United Explorer credit card, ScotteVest, Voya Financial, Zenni Optical, Pacific Life, Indeed, Bowflex, SmileDirectClub, NerdWallet, Minted, Ancestry.com, and IHOP Jaguar had all told TheWrap they plan to suspend advertising on the program.
A spokesman for Takeda Pharmaceutical Company told TheWrap in a statement: “We have pulled our advertising off of Tucker Carlson’s show.”
On Dec. 17, Carlson addressed the growing boycott campaign against his sponsors over his on-air remarks about immigration, telling viewers that he would not be intimidated.
“You’ve seen it a million times, it happens all the time,” he said. “The enforcers scream ‘racist’ on Twitter, until everyone gets intimidated and changes the subject to the Russia investigation or some other distraction. It’s a tactic, a well-worn one. And it won’t work with the show, we’re not intimidated. We plan to say what’s true until the last day.”
The pressure, however, has only grown with each defection, as liberal pressure groups like Media Matters for America and Sleeping Giants have kept up the pressure on Twitter. Activists like Jordan Uhl and Judd Legum posted real-time updates to their massive followings of companies whose ads appeared on Monday night’s show.
“We cannot and will not allow voices like Tucker Carlson to be censored by agenda-driven intimidation efforts from the likes of Moveon.org, Media Matters and Sleeping Giants,” a spokesperson for Fox News told TheWrap in a statement Tuesday afternoon. “Attempts were made last month to bully and terrorize Tucker and his family at their home. He is now once again being threatened via Twitter by far left activist groups with deeply political motives.
The statement continued: “While we do not advocate boycotts, these same groups never target other broadcasters and operate under a grossly hypocritical double standard given their intolerance to all opposing points of view.”
The flap began when Carlson remarked that immigrants have made the United States “poorer and dirtier and more divided.”
Since then, he’s lost some of his biggest advertisers — starting with insurance giant Pacific Life on Friday. “One of our ads appeared on Tucker Carlson’s show last night following a segment where Mr. Carlson made a number of statements regarding immigration,” the company said in a statement posted to Twitter.
“As a company, we strongly disagree with Mr. Carlson’s statements. Our customer base and our workforce reflect the diversity of our great nation, something we take great pride in. We will not be advertising on Mr. Carlson’s show in the coming week as we reevaluate our relationship with his program.”
The boycott metastasized from there.
“We are actively working with our media buyers to confirm that SmileDirectClub is no longer running our ads around any political opinion shows,” the company told TheWrap.
Employment giant Indeed said it has stopped advertising on Carlson’s show and has “no plans to advertise on this program in the future.”
Indeed responded in messages to several Twitter users that the company hadn’t run ads on “Tucker Carlson Tonight” for “over a month now.”
CareerBuilder has permanently pulled its ads from Carlson’s show as well as other unnamed Fox News programming. “Our purpose at CareerBuilder is to help people build a life that works. Not some people. All people,” the company said in a statement provided to TheWrap. “People looking for jobs. And people looking to hire people who are looking for jobs. Which is why, last Friday, we permanently suspended advertising on some Fox programming, including Tucker Carlson Tonight. We will continue to advertise on programs that align with who we are and what we value.”
Not all advertisers are pulling the plug. MyPillow inventor and CEO Mike Lindell told TheWrap in a statement Tuesday: “I am not changing my advertising. I make all of my advertising decisions based on what is best for MyPillow, my customers and my employees.”
“Farmers invests in advertising across a broad range of networks and programs that reflect the diversity of opinions and viewpoints found across the nation,” a Farmers Insurance spokesperson told TheWrap. “Advertising decisions made by Farmers should not be construed to be an endorsement of any kind as to a show’s content or the individuals appearing on the show.”
A spokesperson for AstraZeneca told TheWrap that the “content and opinions of the outlets, networks or websites for which we advertise are not reflective of our views or values as a company. However, as a standard practice, we regularly monitor our media programming to ensure its aligned to our corporate values. As such, we will continue to assess our advertising purchases regarding the heightened attention surrounding this matter.”