The Other McCain

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CNN’s ‘Poorly Rated’ @Soledad_OBrien Will Lose Her Show Nobody Watched

Posted on | January 30, 2013 | 61 Comments

Soledad O’Brien, America’s Least Popular Cable TV News Personality™

Jeff Zucker is making big changes at CNN, the cable-news pioneer that has fallen to third place in the ratings: Gone are longtime contributors James Carville and Mary Matalin, as well as Bill Bennett and Erick Erickson, the latter of whom has signed on with Fox News. Now we learn that America’s Least Popular Cable TV News Personality™ will be losing her morning-show spot:

CNN plans to launch a new morning show to replace the poorly rated “Starting Point with Soledad O’Brien,” sources at the network tell POLITICO.
The new show will be co-hosted by Chris Cuomo, who has just joined the network from ABC News, and likely by Erin Burnett, who currently hosts a primetime program on CNN. O’Brien’s own future at the network remains unclear.
“Soledad is very important to the network, and we’re discussing various options with her,” a CNN spokesperson told POLITICO this afternoon.

So, Cuomo and Burnett will anchor the new morning show and yet “Soledad is very important to the network” . . . how?

O’Brien is one of those people who used to work for the “Big Three” broadcast networks — in O’Brien’s case, NBC — and who was therefore automatically considered a “get” when CNN hired her in 2003. But Soledad has since flopped in every time-slot she’s had, and if she had any ratings magic, surely it would have been apparent by now, nearly 10 years into her career as a cable-news ratings albatross.

Strangely, The Atlantic‘s Alexander Abad Santos suggests the unliked O’Brien could get a primetime slot at CNN. Is Jeff Zucker that stupid?

UPDATE: When I say Soledad O’Brien is “unpopular,” here’s what I mean — Monday’s Nielsen ratings:

Fox & Friends …………………………………….. 1,003,000
MSNBC “Morning Joe” ………………………….. 412,000
CNN Headline News “Morning Express” …. 247,000
CNN “Starting Point” …………………………….. 193,000

Soledad O’Brien is not merely behind Fox and MSNBC, she’s even drawing 50,000 fewer viewers than Robin Meade on Headline News.

UPDATE II: Linked by Donald Douglas at American Power and by Ace of Spades who observes:

Now, Soledad O’Brien had crap ratings and so does Piers Morgan; but they’re keeping the portly white guy, eh?

CNN executives were quick to clarify their complaint that Soledad’s audience was “too ethnic.” Translation: “We can’t fire Soledad, because she’ll sue us for discrimination. Also, we resent the inference that we would cancel a show just because it doesn’t draw the audience of high-income young white professionals that adverstisers prefer!”



  • WJJ Hoge

    I haven watched CNN since the last time I was stuck in an airport.

  • rosalie

    I don’t even watch them in the airport. I take a seat that’s farthest from the TV facing the opposite direction.

  • robertstacymccain

    What would CNN’s ratings be if it weren’t for their airport audience?

  • rosalie

    I never thought about that. And I bet at least half would change the channel if they could.

  • ronk

    maybe they could have good ratings if they were truly a ‘news’ channel instead of the mouth piece for every progressive cause.

  • JohnInMA

    To be fair, CNN gets a lot of viewers on the front end of national or international crises and major events. But no one seemed to care about the station for anything routine it produced. For me, it’s easy to predict these most recent changes won’t cause a significant shift except for one: I will definitely give whatever show they assign to Jake Tapper a look. If it’s good, I’ll stick with it. Cuomo? I could care less.

    We’ll see.

  • Becca Lower

    I had to pick up a relative at the downtown Cincinnati Greyhound station a few weeks back, and the sole tv there was tuned to CNN. It was positioned up near the ceiling, most likely to keep one of the miscreants from absconding with it. I wish I could have changed the channel. It was the night of Piers Morgan’s horrible “gun violence” forum.

  • jakee308

    Couldn’t happen to a better conniving manipulative divisive pandering race-baiting snide sneering snarky little lying witch.

    (I know. Why don’t I express how I REALLY feel?)

  • Becca Lower

    How common is it for a channel’s president to also be an executive producer? Read that the executive producer who left yesterday isn’t being replaced, but that Zucker will also wear that hat, in the WSJ. That’s the definition of hands-on.

  • jakee308

    If they start tossing programming that doesn’t get the ratings, they won’t have anything left. Unless they start actually showing the NEWS.

    What a shocka; lying leftist douchebags who lie about the conditions in the country and how great their boyfriend in the White House is; can’t get any ratings. Who’d a thunk it.

  • jakee308

    Hardest hit: So called conservative Erick Erickson.

    How does it feel to be included in THAT group of leftist douches who can’t get ratings, Erick?

    Think maybe you share some of their “attributes”?

  • richard mcenroe

    Airports, restaurants and senior care centers.

  • richard mcenroe

    Well, I don’t know about you, but the first thought in my head whenever major news breaks, is “Gee, I wonder what Chris Cuomo’s take on this is…”

  • SDN

    Erickson is moving to Fox.

  • SDN

    “Soledad is very important to the network, and we’re discussing various options with her”

    Translation: We’re discussing what will prevent her from filing discrimination lawsuits.

  • Wordygirl

    On the comparison between networks, I can believe O’Brien is lower than HLN. I actually watch HLN occasionally. Robin Mead doesn’t go for the blatantly political angle, she plays it relatively straight.

  • McGehee

    They lose Sarah Palin and gain Erick Erickson — while still having Bill O’Really and Shemp Smith.

    Cable news is vaster and wastier than TV in general.

  • jsn2

    She’s the dumbest person in a position of influence on cable news.

  • jakee308

    And your point relative to what I said is . . . ?

  • Gerard Vanderleun

    And at Urban Dictionary we learn: “zucker;” Synonymous with fucker because Jeff Zucker at NBC is the dumbestmotherfucker in television.
    “That dumb motherzucker tried to bump Conan’s Tonight Show to 12:05. What the Zuck?”

  • Gerard Vanderleun

    Well, if Soledad O’Brien thought she’d given her last blow-job, she was wrong. Back on your head, Soledad.

  • Neo

    If only she had had that “Dev” avatar from MSNBC …

  • richard mcenroe

    Wasn’t he the genius who decided to show “Firefly” out of sequence?

  • Neo

    NBC also ruined the Weather Channel. Everything there is bad weather, they have some story about Alaska cargo fliers.

  • Teresa in Fort Worth

    CNN obviously hates black people…..

  • Neo

    Palin is either getting back into politics or getting out completely.

  • RecklessProcess

    I was just at Wikipedia and I see someone has changed the entry for Termination to say it is defined as ‘getting a raise’. Poor Soledad cannot stop herself from editing the wiki entries to match her TV lies.

  • Dan Gillen

    i almost threw the remote when I saw the weather channel was naming winter snow storms.

  • MrCaniac

    To be fair to Soledad for losing to “Morning Express”, Robin Meade is pretty hawt.

  • Dan Gillen

    nope that was Fox. I don’t think Zucker has ever worked for them.

  • JeffWeimer

    I want to upvote this comment about a million times. Is that wrong?

  • Sweet63


  • pmanner

    Depends on how many people are stuck in ICUs and can’t reach the remote.

  • gracepmc

    Fox also added Kucinch

  • Don Burton

    Turning off the airport CNN would seem to be the best use for the TV B Gone product, if it actually works.

  • effinayright

    Discussing options? You mean like, “Either PUT out for us, or we CALL you a cab.”???

  • Finrod Felagund

    NBC also ruined the Weather Channel.

    No kidding, I nearly lost it when I saw they were showing ‘news’ from MSNBC. It used to be a safe channel to always tune to, not any more.

  • economist

    Last time I was in an Airport they were actually showing Fox. Same thing with my Bank which has a feed for waiting customers, switched over from CNN some time ago.

  • McGehee

    She’s not getting out, according to her interview after leaving Fox.

  • whiteinterloper

    Not anymore.

  • Knitebane

    You need one of these. 🙂

  • Andrew Fry

    Did you ever see that movie “Powder”? It’s about a kid with a sort of
    EMP field disrupting all electronics around him. Everytime I see Wolf Blitzer pop up on a TV in
    the airport I wish for that power.

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  • rosalie

    That’s good to hear.

  • Captain Obvious

    ” Is Jeff Zucker that stupid?” He took over NBC when it was #1 and drove it to #4, what do you think?

  • Daily Kenn

    Sitting here waiting for my phone to ring.
    So far: nothing.

    Call me Zuck. I can do the show via skype.

  • aliswell

    I’d rather watch the planes taking off and landing.

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