Jake Tapper’s CNN primetime flop to end after midterms

Liberal CNN anchor Jake Tapper’s ratings-deficient primetime show is being officially canceled after the midterm elections and he will return to his old show on the network with egg on his face.

Tapper will return to “The Lead” at 4 pm EST on weekdays following the red wave expected to sweep the elections, ending his primetime run in the “special lineup” the network announced in September to cover critical midterm elections.

“As part of a special lineup, Jake agreed to anchor the 9 pm hour through the midterm elections,” a CNN spokesperson told Fox News Digital. “At the completion of that schedule, he’ll be returning to his award-winning program ‘The Lead.’ We will announce post-election plans for that time slot in the coming days.”

“CNN Tonight with Jake Tapper” debuted on Oct. 10 with what was thought to be an all-star lineup including President Biden and actor Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. It pretty much flopped with only an average of 854,000 viewers. That number was a distant third behind Fox News’ “Hannity” with 2.6 million viewers and MSNBC’s “Alex Wagner Tonight” with 1.6 million viewers. Since then, it has been downhill for the CNN star.

The new CEO of CNN, Chris Licht, envisioned Tapper as being the “new face” of the network as he attempted to make it more nonpartisan following years of leftist coverage that wallowed in bashing former President Trump. Unfortunately, his hopes were dashed as Tapper’s viewership tanked.

Licht noted that viewers would appreciate “Jake’s no-nonsense approach to covering the news,” in an announcement in September about the special primetime programming that was set to last through the midterm elections. “This move will showcase his tough reporting, smart analysis and consequential interviews, as our audiences navigate the myriad of issues at stake in the midterms.”

Licht reportedly had wanted Tapper in the 9 pm slot permanently because it had been vacant since disgraced anchor Chris Cuomo was terminated. That has now changed along with many of the talking heads on the network getting the proverbial boot.

Tapper has always been seen as more moderate than his foaming-at-the-mouth colleagues such as Don Lemon and Brianna Keiller. But in many ways he is just as partisan and has made it clear that he not only despised Trump, he didn’t much care for the GOP in general.

“Unhinged lies born from Donald Trump’s grievance that he lost and his refusal to accept reality… this anti-democracy insanity — it has already infiltrated the same halls of Capitol Hill where the rioters once stood,” Tapper said in his second primetime broadcast.

“All of this leaves you, the voter, in sort of an impossible position. You should be able to walk into that voting booth and vote on issues that affect your life like the economy or crime or education or healthcare. But now, in too many races, instead of asking yourself, ‘What can this candidate do for me and my community and my children in the next two years?’ You now also have to ask, ‘Hey, does this candidate believe in democracy?’” he added while torching “election deniers” running for office.

Tapper seems fixated on Trump, Jan. 6, and so-called “election deniers.” He has banned from his show those whom he has judged guilty on those counts. That apparently only applies to Republicans since he wholeheartedly welcomes Democrats like Stacey Abrams, who still thinks she won the gubernatorial race in Georgia in 2018.

CNN is not doing well and that is an understatement. The network’s morning shows are also struggling. Licht had reportedly hoped to revive the network’s early programming with “CNN This Morning” after successfully launching “Morning Joe” on MSNBC and reviving “CBS This Morning” as its executive producer. But that doesn’t seem to be working either.

“CNN This Morning” debuted on Tuesday with an average of 387,000 viewers according to Fox News. It got hammered by Fox News’ “Fox & Friends” which averages 1.5 million viewers. MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” also clobbered it with a 793,000 viewer average.

“CNN This Morning” is co-hosted by Poppy Harlow, Kaitlan Collins, and Don Lemon. Lemon insists his assignment to the show is not a demotion despite previously having his own show in primetime.

According to Variety, primetime is not a guarantee of viewership – content is, “The most-watched show on cable news these days doesn’t even air during primetime. It’s ‘The Five,’ a roundtable program on Fox News Channel that relies on four conservative regulars and a rotating cadre of liberals.”

CNN long ago disabused conservatives from watching its tedious attacks against Republicans. As the new CEO cleans house trying to steer the network towards actual reporting, it has now alienated leftists as well.

Fewer are watching the network these days and it is hard to tell if it will survive.

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