Ratings for Thursday night’s prime-time hearing by the House panel investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol incursion show Americans would have preferred some straight news.
In a review of ratings shared by Newsbusters, a clear pattern emerged.
Every one of the three major broadcast networks that aired the hearing ended up with a smaller audience than if they had simply provided their usual news content.
For example, ABC’s haul of 4.35 million viewers for the hearing might seem impressive, but it usually draws 7.4 million viewers for “World News Tonight,” based on ratings from the week of June 1.
The same trend was repeated on NBC, where the novelty of a prime-time hearing attracted 3.31 million viewers, about half of the 6.06 million viewers who usually watch the news on NBC. Over at CBS, curiosity managed to attract 3.24 million viewers, but that was below the nightly average of 4.3 million viewers.
The 18-49 age group in particular was turned off by the substitution of the hearing for the news. Across the networks, an average of 596,000 viewers in that age range watched the hearings. However, 996,000 viewers would be watching the news on an average night.
Tucker Carlson of Fox News — the only major network not to devote its evening to the hearing — said the media allowing itself to be a publicity tool for the hearing was “a day that will live in shame in the history of the American news business.”
In an op-ed on Fox News Carlson called the hearing “unedited campaign propaganda scripted by the Democratic Party.”
Carlson said the prime-time event “was definitely not a hearing. It was a show trial.”
“At a hearing, dissent is permitted. The other side can speak. Evidence is presented. Evidence is not censored or deceptively edited. That’s not allowed,” he wrote.
Carlson said media leaders are working with Democratic Party leaders and President Joe Biden to distract Americans from the major issue stalking the nation – inflation.
Carlson accused the media of “complicity in a campaign to fool the public, to make you believe that your personal concerns like the fact you can’t buy food or drive anywhere or the police won’t come because they can’t afford gas, those are not important.”
The media and Democrats are trying to brainwash Americans, he wrote.
“You have to pretend that January 6, 2021, remains the single worst thing ever to happen to America, even though not one living person really believes that and if you don’t say so, if you don’t confess the one true faith in public, you’ll be hurt,” he wrote.
Carlson said because inflation is a problem without a solution, Democrats have resorted to distraction.
“So record inflation is likely here to stay. If you want to know why they’re talking about January 6 in primetime, that’s why,” he wrote.
Reporting from Western Journal.