“Virtually Unwatchable”: Trump Takes Another Shot at Fox News
President Donald Trump has been outspoken about the changes that have happened within Fox News – changes that have become searingly impossible to ignore in the wake of the 2020 election. Rumors have flown for years that Rupert Murdoch’s sons have exerted a liberal influence on the network in the absence of the late Roger Ailes, and Trump (to say nothing of his millions of supporters) have begun to notice Fox News’s increasingly leftward tilt. Certainly, Trump has made no secret of his disappointment.
“@FoxNews daytime is virtually unwatchable, especially during the weekends. Watch@OANN ,@newsmax, or almost anything else. You won’t have to suffer through endless interviews with Democrats, and even worse!” he tweeted on Saturday.
Trump’s relationship with Fox News has been a rocky one, even going back to his 2016 campaign for president. Few will forget his feud with Megyn Kelly after the first primary debate, and it’s easy to remember a time when Fox News – like many in the Republican mainstream – was openly hoping for someone (or anyone) other than Trump to win the nomination. Granted, things shifted after Trump won the nomination, and the network has been largely positive about Trump’s presidency, but one wonders if they’re using his loss to precipitate a full-scale change in direction.
“@FoxNews is no longer the same,” Trump wrote in May. “We miss the great Roger Ailes. You have more anti-Trump people, by far, than ever before. Looking for a new outlet!”
But while Trump’s irritation with the cable news outlet has been simmering for months, it boiled over on the week of the election when Fox News outpaced most of their competitors by calling Arizona for Joe Biden.
“@FoxNews daytime ratings have completely collapsed. Weekend daytime even WORSE. Very sad to watch this happen, but they forgot what made them successful, what got them there. They forgot the Golden Goose. The biggest difference between the 2016 Election, and 2020, was @FoxNews,” Trump tweeted that week.
For more than two decades, Fox News has acted as an oasis in a liberal sea, working hard to give viewers insight into stories they would never hear on any of the other news channels. And, to be fair, there is still plenty of good stuff on the network: Tucker, Sean, and Laura are killing the game in prime time. But as the network seemingly tries to pivot towards a more CNN-ish way of doing things, you have to wonder if their stranglehold on cable news ratings is about to give way.
Well, there’s always going to be someone ready to pick up the slack. Given some of the rumors we’ve heard, that someone might turn out to be the president himself.