Journalism legend Ted Koppel mocked CNN’s Brian Stelter face-to-face during a National Press Club panel discussion, saying his network’s “ratings would be in the toilet without Donald Trump.”
“The ratings are up, it means you can’t do without Donald Trump,” Koppel explained in discussing many media executives who quietly enjoy coverage of the President. “You would be lost without Donald Trump.”
Stelter stomped his feet and fought back against the accusation. The host of “Reliable Sources” – of which he’s rarely found any – claimed Koppel’s comments were untrue and that CNN could withstand a significant drop in ratings should a new administration be ushered in for 2020.
Video: To consternation of @BrianStelter, Ted Koppel contended during 10/1 Kalb Report @PressClubDC: “You would be lost without @realDonaldTrump. CNN’s ratings would be in the toilet without Trump.” Stelter: “Ted, you know that’s not true. You’re playing for laughs.” #NPCLive pic.twitter.com/XGZl9yNzqh
— Brent Baker (@BrentHBaker) October 3, 2018
Stelter claimed it would be “okay” if CNN lost significant viewership without round the clock coverage of Trump.
What planet is he living on? They can barely survive WITH perpetual Trump coverage.
Ratings released in September show the network averaged 690,000 daily viewers in prime time while Fox News averaged 2.26 million viewers. That put CNN well behind networks such as HGTV and Nickelodeon. During the exchange with Koppel, Stelter sheepishly admitted that CNN had seen a rise in viewership of 20-40% from before Trump entered the fray.
Still, Stelter shot back at Koppel saying, “I reject the premise that these networks are making so much money off of Trump.” Koppel responded by condescendingly stating it must be a “sensitive subject” for Stelter, before shifting his attack toward another left-wing media outlet, MSNBC.
“Is there a moment of the day when they are not focusing on Donald Trump or some intimately related subject?” he asked of the network that brings you tearful commentary from Rachel Maddow.
Seems Koppel is blaming these anti-Trump networks with helping to provide free coverage of the President. Stelter’s denial of that reality is contradictory to his network’s own President, Jeff Zucker.
“This is an extraordinary time in journalism,” Zucker said last year referencing the Donald Trump era. “Many organizations in the United States have never done better work.”
“This is really the renaissance of journalism in America because of the nature of what’s going on,” he added.
Even former CNN anchor Soledad O’Brien called out Stetler.
No boo—Ted Koppel is right. Hence the frantic efforts to get the candidate on all the time, and to not depart from Trump-centric news. “Ratings fall” generally means your show gets cancelled, so let’s dispense with that BS, since you’re a media critic and all. https://t.co/HADKDTUY0n
— Soledad O’Brien (@soledadobrien) October 3, 2018
Stelter rarely dispenses with the BS. Rather, he tends to dish it out.
He was mercilessly mocked after bragging that his network failed to cover a Trump rally in June, noting that only Fox News had done so.
So you’re settling for last place again? Awesome!
— STEALTH JEFF (@drawandstrike) June 21, 2018
Was he trying to prove the network could withstand a further drop in ratings? Perhaps if CNN would simply cover Trump, and cover him fairly, they wouldn’t be the laughingstock of the media world.