Chris Cuomo is making moves for a TV comeback. After being fired from CNN back in December of 2021 for helping his older brother Andrew Cuomo try to overcome various public sexual harassment accusations, the notorious broadcast journalist has been off the airwaves for the most part. Now, he has landed a new primetime gig with Nexstar’s NewsNation, a more opinion-based news option, but how many fewer people actually watch the channel during primetime hours in comparison to his former network?
Apparently, a helluva lot, according to a breakdown of 2022 viewership by IndieWire. They report that NewsNation averages roughly 50,000 viewers during primetime, whereas CNN takes in an average total of 762,000. It’s a wide discrepancy, further underscored by the fact that only 8,000 of the former’s total is in the key age demographic of 25-54.
The hope is presumably that Chris Cuomo will bolster NewsNation’s numbers when his show premieres in the fall. IndieWire notes that the 51-year-old was indeed pretty successful doing so during his tenure on CNN. His old show, Cuomo Prime Time (which was on for four years) brought in an average of nearly 2 million viewers each night in 2020, with the key demographic being roughly a quarter of that total. It went down to 1.334 million in 2021, but that’s believed to be the result of it being a non-presidential election year.
It isn’t clear either as of this writing what primetime slot Chris Cuomo will be taking over on NewsNation in the fall. Currently, Marni Hughes is on at 8 p.m., Dan Abrams at 9 p.m. and fellow CNN alum Ashleigh Banfield at 10 p.m. It was on NewsNation’s Dan Abrams Live on July 26 that the father of three officially announced that he was joining the network. Chris Cuomo also talked at length about the allegations involving his brother that got him fired from CNN in the first place.
Most notably, it was said that he used his contacts in the media to try and put out the growing scandal around former New York governor Andrew Cuomo. There was also talk that Chris spearheaded strategy meetings and crafted statements for better optics on behalf of his brother. However, he in turn reaffirmed to Abrams that he “never contacted” others in the media to try and sway their coverage about his brother. Furthermore, he indicated that the context of his calls to friends and colleagues were way different than they were made to sound.
Yet, Chris Cuomo still has a major bone to pick with CNN about his ousting. He accused the network of wrongful termination and creating a smear campaign against him in a March arbitration filing, where he demanded $125 million in compensation. (It's not public knowledge if the former employer and employee settled the matter privately in the intervening months or if it will eventually be escalated to the courts.) And this wasn't the first time that their working relationship was put on blast. After contracting COVID-19 back in 2020, Cuomo had to walk back certain comments he made about not liking his professional situation very much at the time.
Nevertheless, though, the CNN alum’s new spot on NewsNation indicates that, at the very least, he’s not done reporting the news just yet. We await confirmation of his primetime show’s premiere date on the 2022 TV schedule, at which time we'll see if the underdog network’s numbers truly see an uptick.
Freelance writer. Favs: film history, reality TV, astronomy, French fries.
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