Fox News host Tucker Carlson called a Black police officer who said he was called the N-word while defending the Capitol on Jan. 6 an “angry, left-wing political activist” on Wednesday.
In April, Capitol police Officer Harry Dunn told “The ReidOut” host Joy Reid that Black officers fought a “different” battle than everybody else as they endured both physical trauma and racist slurs while fending off supporters of former President Donald Trump who stormed the Capitol.
Dunn is among the first people set to testify on July 27 before a new House committee created to investigate the Capitol riot. Ahead of Dunn’s testimony, Carlson verbally attacked the officer’s impartiality as a witness, citing past social media posts that involved Democratic lawmakers.
“Dunn will pretend to speak for the country’s law enforcement community, but it turns out Dunn has very little in common with your average cop,” Carlson said on his show. “Dunn is an angry, left-wing political activist.”
Backlash on social media was swift.
“Forever grateful to officers like Harry Dunn,” Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., tweeted on Wednesday. “He put his body between lawmakers and an armed mob.”
Dunn’s attorneys also responded, posting a lenghty statement on Twitter.
“Tonight Fox News allowed its host Tucker Carlson, who has not served a day in uniform, whether military or law enforcement, to criticize the heroism and service of African-American U.S. Capitol Police Officer Harry Dunn,” David H. Laufman and Mark S. Zaid said in the statement.
“Our client has served 13 years in law enforcement and on January 6, 2021, fought against an insurrectionist violent crowd — no doubt many of them Carlson’s supporters — to protect the lives of our elected officials, including Vice President Pence,” they said.
The lawyers added Dunn would “lay down his life to protect a Member of Congress, regardless of being a Republican or Democrat,” and would continue to testify next Tuesday.
Dunn and other Capitol officers have all aggressively lobbied for a bipartisan commission to investigate the Jan. 6 riot, but legislation to form the panel fell short of the 60 votes needed to move forward.
More than 500 people have been criminally charged six months after the pro-Trump mob stormed the Capitol to stop Congress from formally accepting the Electoral College votes that delivered November’s election to President Joe Biden. The riot left five people dead, including Capitol police Officer Brian Sicknick.
Fox News did not immediately respond to a request for comment Thursday.