Chris Cuomo's viewership down by half after interview with brother, NY Governor Andrew is mocked as stunt
CNN anchor Chris Cuomo's ratings have headed south alarmingly in two months since he was diagnosed with coronavirus. According to data from Nielsen Media Research, Chris’ ratings have plunged 49 percent since March 30 when he was among the top-ranked cable news hosts. Last week, the 49-year-old host could average only 440,000 daily viewers. Chris' stunning nosedive became all the more prominent following his interviews with his heavyweight brother Andrew Cuomo, the governor of the state of New York, the city which has been the worst hit by Covid-19 in the US. In one interview, the Cuomo brothers were seen bantering with each other on coronavirus tests but it did not go down well with a lot of viewers. It is not that Chris is the only cable news host to witness a fall in viewership as people have become increasingly concerned over the pandemic that has claimed more than 102,000 lives in the country. But compared to other hosts like MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow and Fox News’ Sean Hannity, his fall has been steeper.
Source close to Chris says it's normal
While the CNN host’s spokesperson did not respond when Daily Mail asked about the matter, a source close to him did not find anything alarming. He said it is normal for cable news ratings to go up and down depending on the happenings in the news world and added that weekly averages do not give a perfect assessment about the viewership. Chris’ ratings peaked in the last week of March when he revealed that he tested positive for Covid-19 and was isolated in the basement. He beat his competitors with 862,000 daily viewers in the age group of 24 to 54. His ratings have since dropped 49 percent in the demo and 35 percent overall. For Maddow, it is 17 and 7 percent while for Hannity, 38 and 12 percent, respectively.
Last week, Chris was seen mocking his politician brother’s nose size while brandishing big prop swaps during the lighthearted interview even as the governor faced a backlash over an order in March that sought nursing homes to accept patients recovering from Covid-19. The step has been considered a blunder as several elderly and vulnerable residents lost their lives from the virus, suspected to have spread more because of the order. The state of Florida, which banned patient transfer to nursing homes, saw a much lower death rate in nursing homes despite having a bigger elderly population than New York. "Journalism that truly aims to restore trust in media would hold Andrew Cuomo to account for these missteps," David A Graham wrote in The Atlantic. But Chris' bantering with his brother disappointed him to write: "The problem comes when the efforts to juice ratings start to get in the way of accurate journalism that holds officials accountable." The Cuomo brothers were criticized by various quarters following their interview though there were some who defended Governor Cuomo saying he held a press conference daily on the pandemic that has cripped New York with over 29,000 deaths.