Abrams: NewsNation a threat to ‘outrage’ media

Dan Abrams Live

(NewsNation) — The hits at NewsNation keep on coming, and the ongoing anger in the politicized media just shows the threat we pose to those outlets whose livelihoods depend on Americans being outraged and picking sides.

It’s all being exposed with the announcement that NewsNation hired Chris Cuomo to host a show here. 

Chris is controversial — it comes with the territory. I am not going to defend Chris. He doesn’t want or need my defense. As I have said before, I think he has work to do to get the support of conservatives, and I am going to wait and watch what his show brings.

Until then, I’ll speak for myself and let him speak for himself, but it does seem that some in the media want to make sure he doesn’t have the chance to be heard.

For example, on the latest episode of his podcast “The Chris Cuomo Project,” Cuomo argued that the Jan. 6 committee hasn’t presented evidence that former President Donald Trump committed a crime in connection with the attack on the Capitol. It was a sort of nuanced take that would probably irk both sides’ extremes.

Predictably, that take earned Cuomo scorn from the Twitter blue check brigade on the left.

One liberal commentator said “Cuomo was willing to lay low for all of a few months — now he’s back with a podcast and interviews in which he defends trump and demands America move on from January 6.”

Another said “Chris Cuomo was a liberal who got rejected by his fellow liberals. So now he’s moving to the right to try to find a new constituency.”

It couldn’t be that be that he believes it — and I will say that on this subject, I largely agree with him.

The conservative media went after Cuomo as well, over the very same take. On Friday, Fox News’ Jesse Watters accused Cuomo of flip-flopping, playing an old clip from CNN that he presented as some sort of smoking gun.

In the Clip, Cuomo says “that Trump mob that attacked the citadel of our democracy, our Capitol, they are being rounded up and charged. It’s happening. We are learning more about who they are. They are not getting a pass. At least not yet. Trump whipped up these special people that he loves with lie after lie about the election being stolen.”

Watters replies: “So what does Chris Cuomo believe? We don’t know. Seems like he changes his opinion depending on who is paying him.”

The first clip from Cuomo’s podcast was all about how the Jan. 6 committee has not produced evidence of a crime against Trump. Where, in the second clip from CNN, did Cuomo say Trump committed a crime?  Those two commentaries don’t even conflict.

But when you view the media through a binary prism like they do at Fox News, every opinion must be black or white, left or right, pro-Trump or anti-Trump. Cuomo expressed what I guess could be viewed as an anti-Trump opinion on CNN last January, and a more pro-Trump opinion 18 months later.

So it couldn’t possibly be that he was delivering two different takes on different issues about the same person?

I get this sort of criticism all the time. Last Thursday, I got called a right-wing nut for criticizing the cancel culture crowd at George Washington University law school for driving Clarence Thomas to step down from his post.

And in the very same show, I got called a left-wing loser for coming down on the Indiana attorney general, who appears to be on a crusade to find dirt on the doctor who performed an abortion on a 10-year-old rape victim.

My hope is for everyone to process these types of discussions a little differently. Maybe you agree with me. Maybe you disagree. But at least you consider the analysis and hopefully I can earn your trust that I am coming from an honest place. I am trying to be objective — not to identify with one side or the other — and I do get hit regularly from both sides’ extremes.

I’m sorry to say that goal is not shared by other cable news outlets. Take Fox News competitor Newsmax. Late last week, host John Bachman went after NewsNation. He unabashedly represents team red, and our effort at balance means we aren’t on his team, so to them it must mean we are on the other side.

“NewsNation has yet to build a significant audience since launching two years ago. And they claim to be a center news network. But so far they’ve basically only hired major liberal hosts away from MSNBC and CNN. Of course, we all know that Cuomo is liberal. His dad is Mario Cuomo after all, his brother’s Andrew Cuomo. He, of course, is anti-Trump. However, he tells NewsNation that he is neither a Republican nor a Democrat,” Bachman said.

Put aside that Newsmax has been around a long time, unlike us, and hasn’t built a significant audience. Put aside that there may be more people working here who came from Fox News than any of the other cable news networks.

Notice the way he doesn’t even accuse Cuomo of being anti-Republican. He says Cuomo is “anti-Trump” because Newsmax’s whole business model is built around supporting Trump no matter what.

Bachman then brought in Brian Anderson, former commissioner of the New York City department of records and information services. He basically, was in charge of historical archives, New York City’s version of ancestry.com.

That doesn’t exactly seem like a relevant credential in a media analysis discussion, but why should that stop them? He will say what they need him to say.

“Chris Cuomo was probably one of the most liberal people at CNN. And now he joins NewsNation, which has former MSNBC host Dan Abrams and Ashleigh Banfield,” Anderson said. “This is not a center network, and it’s pretty amazing how liberal channels say they’re centrists, but I guess in a room full of AOCs, even Chuck Schumer can look like a centrist.”

You got me. I worked at MSNBC … up until 2008. You know who else worked at MSNBC back in the day? Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham. And did you know that Cuomo worked at Fox News at one point? What does this all prove? It’s just a dumb thing to say.

But the former records and information services commissioner is also concerned that even Fox is not supportive enough of Trump.

“We need to be clear: Fox has never really fully supported Trump,” Anderson said. “In fact, Trump has said the real reason he lost the 2020 election is that Fox did not fully support him. He has been on record as saying, ‘You know, they were never really for me, until I won.'”         

That’s the standard of journalism they use over at politicized places like Newsmax. It’s Fox’s job to support Trump. He is on their team.

And that’s my point. Just about everyone on cable news has picked a team, but not us.

Don’t just take my word for it. The well-respected independent media watchdog Ad Fontes Media, which rates and reviews thousands of news outlets for their reliability and bias, puts NewsNation just about right in the middle. Other major cable news networks are to our left and right.

And that’s what we’re all about on this show — moderation. We exchange ideas freely, fairly and without contempt.

That is a unique concept on cable news circa 2022, but I hope you continue to stay with us on our mission to speak up for the marginalized majority, the often silent majority somewhere near the middle.

© 1998 - 2022 Nexstar Media Inc. | All Rights Reserved.

Trending on NewsNation

Elections 2022

More Elections 2022