- The Washington Times - Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Several major firms are resisting calls from director Judd Apatow and other Twitter liberals to boycott Tucker Carlson’s TV show because he opposes illegal immigration.

Pacific Life, Indeed.com, IHOP and several other companies did pull their ads from the Fox News Channel show “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” but the resisters include such major firms as Farmer’s Insurance, Mitsubishi and John Deere.

In a statement to the Daily Beast, Farmers Insurance said it “invests in advertising across a broad range of networks and programs that reflect the diversity of opinions and viewpoints found across the nation.”

When Farmers advertisers on political shows, the company explained, it “should not be construed to be an endorsement of any kind as to a show’s content or the individuals appearing on the show.”

The Japanese auto and ship giant concurred, telling the Beast that “our advertising media spend is determined based on demographics and psychographics, not politics.”

A spokesman for German pharmaceutical giant Bayer told the Hollywood Reporter that major companies cannot reach audiences via boycotting political points of view.

SEE ALSO: Judd Apatow pushes Tucker Carlson advertiser boycott on Twitter

“Opinions or views expressed by the network’s news programs or their hosts are solely those of the network, and do not necessarily reflect those of Bayer. Given the wide diversity of media today and wide range of public opinion on any given issue, it would be an impossible task to find a major television or radio network whose entire programming schedule appeals to all audiences,” Bayer wrote.

The fracas began last week, when Mr. Carlson denounced illegal immigration, saying it “makes our own country poorer, and dirtier, and more divided” and that liberals support it as “a form of atonement” for the sins of previous U.S. leaders.

Over the weekend, Mr. Apatow took to Twitter to troll companies who advertise on “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” demanding to know why they bought advertising time.

But Fox News is standing by its host and attacking the social-justice warriors as enemies of free political debate.

“It is a shame that left-wing advocacy groups, under the guise of being supposed ‘media watchdogs’ weaponize social media against companies in an effort to stifle free speech. We continue to stand by and work with our advertisers through these unfortunate and unnecessary distractions,” a Fox News Channel spokesperson said.

According to The Associated Press, most of the companies that have pulled their ads are placing elsewhere on Fox News, meaning the network is under no broad pressure.

But many are refusing the social-justice-warrior demands.

A spokesperson for John Deere curtly told the Hollywood Reporter that “John Deere is an advertiser on the Fox Network. Our ads appear on various shows on the network.”

And MyPillow, the biggest advertiser for Mr. Carlson’s show, said in a statement Tuesday that it has no plans to leave.

“I make all of my advertising decisions based on what is best for MyPillow, my customers and my employees,” CEO Mike Lindell told the Associated Press in a statement Tuesday.

• Victor Morton can be reached at vmorton@washingtontimes.com.

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