Environmental activist group Greenpeace, which sought to have MSNBC's Tucker Carlson fired over remarks he made June 22 about France's bombing of Greenpeace ship Rainbow Warrior, has filed a complaint with the FCC over the remarks.
"I am objectively pro-France," Carlson said on a June 22 broadcast according to a Greenpeace transcript. "You know, France blew up the Rainbow Warrior, that Greenpeace ship in Auckland Harbor in the '80s. And I've always respected them..."
Though the commission does not have the same authority to regulate cable speech as it does broadcast, Greenpeace General Counsel Tom Wetterer says he was assured by an FCC staffer (on a consumer hotline) that the commission would at least consider the complaint and not dismiss it out of hand.
FCC enforcement bureau spokesfolk were still checking on the status of the complaint at press time, but the call center operators are not policy experts, but simply log the complaint and pass it on to the appropriate bureau.
Greenpeace wrote a letter to the network in July asking that Carlson be fired for what they argued was speech condoning and promoting terrorism. According to the group, Carlson called Executive Director John Passacantando, re-stating his support for the action and saying it was not terrorism because the French didn't mean to kill anyone [one Greenpeace activist was killed in the explosion].
"In no way did Tucker Carlson condone terorism. Tucker's show is an opinion program and the opinons expressed are his and not those of MSNBC," Jeremy Gains, VP, communications, MSNBC, told B&C.