CNN’s Anderson Cooper and Brian Stelter each hit devastating, yet unique, rating lows

CNN hosts Brian Stelter and Anderson Cooper both experienced significant declines in viewership, albeit in different venues, as their network continues its downward spiral following former President Donald Trump’s term and a series of scandals.

Stelter’s media analysis program, “Reliable Sources,” was already in trouble in terms of overall viewership, but fell to a new low on Sunday, recording its smallest audience of the year thus far and failing to reach at least one million viewers for the fifth week in a row, Fox News reported.

The May 2 show only garnered some 810,000 viewers, including an extremely thin 163,000 in the prime 25-54 adult demographic, the worst showing of the year for Stelter in both categories.

Embarrassingly, Stelter’s show drew more viewers last week when he was on vacation and saw John Avlon filling in for him. Avlon’s April 25 “Reliable Sources” show drew 907,000 viewers, or roughly 100,000 more than Stelter did on his return.

In addition, Avlon drew more prime demographic viewers, coming in at an average of 182,000 for the hour.

Stelter tweeted a photo from where he vacationed to promote the April 25 edition of his show, which has been struggling to attract viewers since Trump left office Jan. 20. The left-wing pundit spent the entirety of Trump’s term criticizing every aspect of his presidency, while generally refusing to cast aspersions at liberal lawmakers and other progressive networks. Since, Stelter has often bashed Fox News and other conservative outlets, but the programming strategy obviously isn’t generating much of an audience, having failed to reach a million viewers seven of the last eight weeks.

Other programs at CNN are also failing miserably, including morning show “New Day,” which relaunched recently with network host Brianna Keilar seated next to Alisyn Camerota instead of John Berman.

When Camerota and Berman were co-hosting, the show still wasn’t a powerhouse but ratings were somewhat better than they are now, Fox News reports. “New Day” recorded its worst week of 2021 among total viewers, averaging fewer than 500,000 each morning, down 37 percent from the first quarter of this year.

Meanwhile, Anderson Cooper, another CNN personality, has been guest-hosting the long-running daytime game show “Jeopardy!” and has overseen that show’s dip in viewership.

“Cooper has scored the lowest ratings of the current crop of Jeopardy guest hosts so far, according to ratings information obtained by the Wrap. The newsman’s first-week ratings (for the week ending April 25) were less than Green Bay Packers star Aaron Rodgers, falling 7 percent from the QB’s numbers to a 5.1 rating,” Yahoo! Entertainment reported this week.

Meanwhile, other hosts for the legacy game show, long hosted by the late Alex Trebek, have been doing far better, including Dr. Mehmet Oz. Guest-hosting in April, Oz scored a 5.2 rating during his first week.

The best host thus far has been historic Jeopardy champ Ken Jennings, who drew a 6.2 rating in week one and 5.9 in week two.

As for CNN overall, the network has been significantly declining since the Trump administration. In December 2019, its prime-time lineup of Cooper, Chris Cuomo, and Don Lemon saw their collective ratings get buried by Fox News as well as other left-leaning networks.

The network saw a bump in viewership following the 2020 election but that increase appears to have completely evaporated, based on current viewership data.


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Jon Dougherty


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