Fox News’ Tucker Carlson is blaming a newspaper for ruining his plans to buy an old garage in western Maine to turn into a studio he could use to tape his TV show while vacationing there.
In the past, Carlson has rented out space at the library in Bryant Pond, Maine. But he scrapped plans to buy a garage next door after the Sun Journal of Lewiston published his intentions. A town meeting was scheduled for next Monday when voters would have decided whether or not to accept Carlson’s offer to buy the garage. The town manager told the Sun Journal that the deal likely would have been approved. But Carlson scrapped the idea. He told the Sun Journal, “I can’t have the building now. I’m kind of crushed.”
Carlson was going to buy the garage for $30,000 and then Fox was going to stock it with the necessary equipment. But Carlson said when word got out, he had to give up his idea. According to the Sun Journal, Carlson said Fox wasn’t going to leave $1 million of equipment in a rural studio whose presence is widely known. (What doesn’t make sense, however, is that after the studio was built and he began doing shows there — with an audience — wouldn’t people know where it was?)
Still, Carlson blamed the Sun Journal for not only spoiling his plans, but doing so on purpose.
Carlson, who said he spends about four months a year in Maine, told the paper, “I’m kind of bitter about it. All it does is hurt me.”
Reporter Steve Collins, who has been covering the story for the Sun Journal, told Poynter that Carlson was polite during an interview and came off as more sad than angry. However, Collins said, “He repeatedly insisted that he was sure I was out to get him — just another Democrat doing a hit piece — but he listened respectfully to my take on it.”
This, of course, is big news in a town with a population of fewer than 1,300. Carlson is well known around Bryant Pond and, according to Collins’ story, is respected by the locals because he “doesn’t put on any airs.” Collins added that Carlson, during the interview, “didn’t come across as a bad guy.’’
Fox has not responded to a Poynter request for a comment from Carlson.
By the way, in this story, Collins wrote this cool fact about Bryant Pond: “It’s most famous for being the last place in America to abandon hand-cranked telephones. Dial phones didn’t arrive there until 1982.”