Things got slightly tense between The View’s Sunny Hostin and guest host Gretchen Carlson on Monday when Hostin accused Carlson of sounding “very Republican” after the former Fox News anchor insisted she is actually an independent voter.
Following Meghan McCain’s acrimonious departure from The View over the summer, the popular ABC daytime talk show has featured a series of rotating guest hosts to fill the conservative seat until they settle on a permanent co-host.
Carlson, the longtime Fox & Friends co-host who blew the whistle on Roger Ailes’ reign of sexual harassment and misconduct at Fox News in 2016, was greeted with a warm welcome when she sat down at The View table Monday morning. In fact, she drew praise for her work on ending forced arbitration for sexual harassment cases.
“I realized what my next calling in life was, which was to make the workplace safer for women, people of color, the LGBTQ community, and that’s what I’m doing,” Carlson said to loud applause.
In a follow-up segment on President Joe Biden’s falling poll numbers among independent and moderate voters, however, Carlson’s commentary wasn’t nearly as well-received—at least by Hostin.
Stating that she agrees “100 percent” that Biden needs to appeal to moderates in order to pass his Build Back Better agenda, Carlson declared she’s an independent before noting a recent poll indicating 41 percent of voters also consider themselves something other than Republican or Democrat.
After saying independents are worried about supply chain issues and inflation, Carlson asserted that Biden had “campaigned on being a moderate” who had a “history of bringing the two parties together” before expressing hope that he was “trying to bring back those skills” to get his bill passed.
“See, I disagree with that. That sounded very Republican of you,” Hostin retorted, prompting some nervous laughter from the crowd.
“No, it’s very independent. I’m not a Republican. I’m an independent,” Carlson shot back.
“But it sounded Republican,” Hostin responded. “Let me say this, you know, there have been many studies about the rise of independents and what those studies have found that few Americans who identify as independent are actually independent.”
Hostin went on to claim that most independents actually lean Democratic or Republican and just don’t want the stigma of being publicly identified with one of those political parties. Co-host Sara Haines, meanwhile, also declared herself an independent voter who “leans left” but has always registered independent.
Towards the end of the segment, Carlson again seemed to call for a Biden to strike a balance towards the middle and take a centrist approach.
“I think compromise is the key,” she said.
“But the other side needs to compromise,” co-host Whoopi Goldberg fired back.
“You’re totally right,” Carlson conceded.