CNN host Brian Stelter has admitted the far-left ratings-challenged “news” network is facing a “legal mess” from the series of recent scandals.
Stelter came clean on his Sunday show “Reliable Sources,” revealing that the disgraceful departures of executives Jeff Zucker, Allison Gollust, and anchor Chris Cuomo have left the network in big trouble.
“When CNN President Jeff Zucker abruptly resigned this month, people wondered if another shoe was going to drop,” Stelter said.
“Zucker tied his exit to his failure to disclose a romantic relationship with Allison Gollust.
“But was there more to the story?
“A few days ago, Gollust also resigned, and now there are stories about the reasons why.
“It seems the second shoe was landed.
“Well-placed sources have told me the situation involves, quote, ‘serious ethical violations.’
“Their reps have pushed back on that strongly, and CNN’s parent warner media is not sharing specifics.
“So here is what we do know.
“We know that Zucker and Gollust were personally involved in CNN’s coverage of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo while his brother Chris was an anchor here.
“Those brotherly interviews at the start of the pandemic were controversial.
“We know, later on, Chris helped Governor Cuomo and the governor’s aides fend sexual harassment allegations.
“We know Zucker did stay loyal to Chris while critics called for the anchorman to be suspended.
“We know that Zucker eventually did suspend and then fire Chris Cuomo in December.
“Zucker said he would not pay out the rest of Cuomo’s contract.
“Cuomo’s legal team then turned around and said, why was he fired for ethical lapses if Zucker and Gollust were guilty of the same thing?
“That’s what caused a third-party law firm to ask lots and lots of questions, including about Gollust’s interactions with the former governor and Zucker’s relationship with Gollust.
“A lot came throughout through this third-party legal probe.”
“This is a legal mess for CNN.”
“Liberals don’t want to hear it, but masking has a cost.”@DLeonhardt continues to be a voice of reason, rattling off mounting social costs.
Loving @brianstelter’s shout out for the #UrgencyOfNormal. pic.twitter.com/uYeCdrsFWK
— Karen Vaites (@karenvaites) February 21, 2022
Clarissa Ward on verifying info about Ukraine and Russia (@brianstelter @clarissaward – @CNNReliable) https://t.co/Nx3jyzZ92P
— MediaREDEF (@MediaREDEF) February 21, 2022
A bigger problem for CNN is what to do about the ratings that are sinking like a stone after President Donald Trump was de-platformed.
From The National Review:
CNN averaged only 548,000 viewers during the week of January 3, a steep 80 percent decline from the 2.7 million it averaged over the same period in 2021.
Some of that decline can be attributed to the drama of January 6 last year, which helped the cable news network attract more viewers than on any other day in its history.
This year, CNN used the anniversary of the Capitol riot to try to replicate that success, hosting a show live from the Capitol grounds.
Fox News and MSNBC both finished well ahead of CNN over the same time period, averaging 1,408,000 and 746,000 viewers, respectively.
CNN also trails Fox in the coveted 25-to-54 age demographic, averaging just 113,000 in that group to Fox’s 223,000, but did outpace MSNBC’s 88,000.