CNN’s early 2022 debut of its streaming service, CNN+, may not be the salvation the media company is looking for, Breitbart reports, as the network faces numerous sex scandals and some of the lowest ratings it has ever experienced.
Network officials have called the streaming launch the most important thing since CNN was created by Ted Turner over 40 years ago, but struggles have mounted after two top producers were accused of child sex crimes, and top host Chris Cuomo was fired for misconduct.
As Breitbart notes, former senior producer for CNN’s The Lead with Jake Tapper, Rick Saleeby, is currently under a criminal investigation for allegedly soliciting sexually explicit photos of an underage girl after undercover watchdogs Project Veritas brought the situation to light.
John Griffin, who was a senior producer on Chris Cuomo’s show, was arrested last month for child sex trafficking, allegedly using Kik and Google Hangouts to “persuade parents to allow him to train their daughters to be sexually submissive.”
So many scandals
Griffin has pleaded not guilty to the charges, which prosecutors say included one instance where he engaged in sexual contact with a 9-year-old girl.
These scandals almost make the firing of Chris Cuomo for helping his brother, disgraced former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D), during the governor’s own sexual misconduct investigation, seem minor in comparison.
CNN surely didn’t want to lose their top-rated host, even if that wasn’t saying much, but when it came to light that Chris Cuomo had used his media connections to obtain information for his creepy brother about pending allegations, the network was essentially left without a choice, as ABC News noted.
They also suspended and then reinstated another host, Jeffrey Toobin, after he was caught masturbating on a Zoom call last year. Toobin is now the butt of a thousand jokes, and his name has become a label for the behavior he was caught doing.
Taking the plunge
The network’s ratings plunged after President Joe Biden was elected and former President Donald Trump was banned from most social media platforms.
It got even worse for CNN when Biden began to fall out of favor with the public, polling-wise, due to a string of disastrous policies including leaving Americans behind after Afghanistan fell to the Taliban, and a rapid rise in energy prices along with soaring inflation due to huge spending increases.
In August, the cable news network had an eight-day period when it didn’t even hit one million viewers a day.
The merger of WarnerMedia with Discovery brings further uncertainty to the network’s future, and many wonder if being the primary media mouthpiece for Democrats will be enough to keep CNN alive if no one is watching.