Brian Stelter Hits a New Ratings Low and There Is an Even More Revealing Detail Found

By:                              Brad Slager

Brian Stelter Hits a New Ratings Low and There Is an Even More Revealing Detail Found

It has been a very rough week for CNN’s self-described media maven, Brian Stelter. After a brief departure he settled back in to host Reliable Sources, his weekly show on Sunday where he is charged with covering the media but basically reveals his obsession with Fox News. That return was rather problematic, but there were other pratfalls encountered this week as well.

When Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis signed the new election bill into law this week he did so on live television, an exclusive for Fox News, at the exclusion of other media. You can see how this would rankle CNN’s Hall Monitor and he had plenty of condemnation. Then, Brian became reminded of the times CNN staged exclusive rights to political figures on their airwaves, and at a political position higher than a state governor.

That blind-eye approach to his own network is something of a trademark with Stelter. Condemning others for their own practices is a frequent rake-stepping move with him. Like earlier this week when he commented on President Trump’s ban on Facebook being made a permanent decision, Brian declared it was justified because Trump’s lying has, “poisoned the democratic well.” But, if that is the case, many asked why CNN is not also becoming deplatformed? Beyond the four-year lie of the 2016 election being swayed by Putin, the network recently pushed the Russian bounties story that has been debunked, and across the network they are insisting that it was Joe Biden who was behind the arrival of the Covid vaccines.

On his Sunday episode Brian had on guest Bill Carter, a longtime acolyte and another media wonk from the New York Times. Brian and Bill were discussing the new Fox News late night talk show, Gutfeld!, because of course he was talking about Fox News. The host asked Mr. Carter about how competitive the new show has been, asking directly, “how is it going?” Carter proceeded to unspool all of his personal gripes about Greg Gutfeld and the quality of the programming, in his opinion.

This was an intentional deflection by both men, because the last thing they actually wanted to do was address the performance of Gutfeld!, because the show is doing amazingly well. Since its debut in early April it has been the second-highest rated of the nightly talk shows, beating Jimmy Kimmel and Jimmy Fallon and is building on its audience. But there is a perfectly sound reason why Stelter does not want to even mention ratings.

In 2021 it has been a brutal year for Brian and Reliable Sources. He has lost over 1.5 million viewers since the new year, and he has consistently been losing to the Fox News competitor in his same time slot, Media Buzz. For the fifth consecutive week he experienced a viewership well below 1 million, and Sunday it was a new low for the year, as he barely crossed over 800,000. But it gets worse.

The week prior, when Stelter was off, Reliable Sources had one of CNN’s morning show hosts filling in, John Avlon. That episode scored a higher rating, with Avlon drawing just about 100,000 more viewers over Stelter’s untriumphant return this Sunday. It is a resounding commentary on things, when the audience displays a direct rebuke like that. If this trend continues for much longer CNN may encourage Brian to remain adrift as he had been last week.

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