New CNN Host Jake Tapper Has Rough Opening Week in Ratings

New CNN Host Jake Tapper Has

Struggling cabler's afternoon show 'The Lead' draws smaller crowd than what it replaced

CNN must hope it can only go up from here, because its new afternoon program hosted by Jake Tapper didn’t draw much of an audience in its first week.

Tapper, the former White House correspondent for ABC News and one of the new faces of CNN under recently installed chief Jeff Zucker, averaged 352,000 viewers in the 4 p.m. ET hour last week, according to Nielsen — down 39% from the net’s average the previous week in the same timeslot (576,000 for “Situation Room”).

Competitively, “The Lead with Jake Tapper” lagged MSNBC’s “Martin Bashir” (409,000) and was just a fraction of the audience garnered by Fox News Channel’s “Your World with Neil Cavuto” (1.17 million).

And in the key news demo of adults 25-54, Tapper fared even worse, with its 78,000 viewers on average down 44% from the 139,000 for “Situation Room.” By comparison, Bashir averaged 92,000 and Cavuto drew 171,000.

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  1. arnold shapiro says:

    Jeff Zuckor is a poster child for “The Peter Principle” (most people rise to their level of incompetence). Ever since Mr. Zuckor left “TheToday Show” he failed at everything he did at NBC. Now he’s at CNN and the same thing is already happening. It’s evident to outsiders but apparently not to Mr. Zuckor that his level of competence is overseeing a morning talk show (“Today”) or an afternoon talk show (“Katie”). Any other position above that, Mr. Zuckor rises to his level of incompetence. The last thing CNN needed to attract more viewers was Jeff Zucker.


  2. MichaelZ says:

    CNN needs an experienced anchor with a specific VOICE, not a reporter hand-picked by Zucker to rise to the anchor level. Duh. This is not rocket science. Tapper is Aaron Brown II. Boring, un-dynamic and old school.

    Bring in someone with charisma!

    On a ratings-related note: enough with the African Voices, Black in America, Inside Africa, Black History Specials, Black in America, etc., etc. That’s the slow drip that has all but killed CNN in the U.S. Parsons has been gone for six years. Zucker, are you listening?????

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