Pennsylvania Democratic Senate Nominee John Fetterman Fires Back At Tucker Carlson Over Tattoo Attack

Pennsylvania Democratic nominee for Senate John Fetterman fired back at Tucker Carlson on Sunday to defend his tattoos in honor of victims of gun violence, after they were called “fake” and “stupid” by the Fox News host earlier this month.

Carlson’s remarks were made during an almost 20-minute open monologue about Fetterman in which the pundit called him a “fake populist” and a “rich kid” because of his background as an heir of a family fortune and his Harvard education. (Carlson is also the product of an elite college.)

The comments about the tattoos were made right after the host criticized the candidate, who is also Pennsylvania’s lieutenant governor, over his position on reviewing life sentences for some second-degree murderers.

“John Fetterman, if he could make one change to the state of Pennsylvania, he’d let the murderers out,” Carlson said. “Only rich kids think like that. Only rich kids wear hoodies to political events. All your stupid fake tattoos. It’s a costume, of course. Duh. It’s not real. But John Fetterman, inspired by his time at Harvard and Aspen Institute, would like to free a third of the prison population in Pennsylvania.”


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Fetterman has tattooed nine dates on his right forearm. Each one, the candidate wrote in a op-ed published by NBC, is a date when someone was shot dead in Braddock, Pennsylvania, when he was the city’s mayor.

“Gun violence and violent crime might be jokes to someone like Carlson, but they are very real to people in towns like Braddock,” he wrote. “My decision to mark these deaths with tattoos was inspired in part by their permanence — the fact that these people, their stories and my town will be with me forever.”

In his op-ed, Fetterman did not address criticisms made by Carlson over his position on reviewing life sentences. His position has been targeted in political ads by his Republican competitor, Mehmet Oz.

The Democratic nominee is slightly ahead in the race, with 47% against 45% for Oz, according to a recent poll by Phillips Academy.

PolitiFact, a fact-checking site, has rated the claims that Fetterman intends to “release one-third of dangerous criminals back into our communities” as “mostly false.”

“Fetterman has touted work to increase the number of pardons issued to prison inmates in Pennsylvania and has called for reducing the prison population in other ways, but we did not find an instance of Fetterman calling for the release of one-third of dangerous criminals,” PolitiFact wrote.

Marcello Correa

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