‘Yapping Puppy’ Brian Kilmeade Loses Cool Over Crashing FOX Ratings, Attacks Steve Bannon

The decision to sideline Tucker Carlson is a touchy subject at Fox News, especially now that ratings have tumbled more than 50 percent for his old time slot. Morning show host Brian Kilmeade has had the unenviable task of standing in for Tucker Carlson, and on Friday received just 1.3 million viewers, down from 3 million the week prior. Asked by radio host Frank Morano about the apparent slump in the network’s audience, Kilmeade responded with denial, defending Fox as “stronger than ever.”

After Fox News announced they had “agreed to part ways” with Carlson, the network decided to implement a weekly rotation of personalities to fill in the 8:00 pm time slot until a “new host is named.” Kilmeade first took over on Monday, immediately blowing the channel’s ratings. By Tuesday, the show’s audience had fallen to 1.7 million.

“A lot of folks are wondering what this portends for the future of Fox News Channel,” Morano told Kilmeade on The Other Side of Midnight with Frank Morano. “You have a lot of folks, folks like Steve Bannon and others, basically declaring war on Fox and saying if you watch Fox, you’re part of the enemy. Where do you think this whole episode leaves Fox News and its viewership going forward?”

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Kilmeade responded,

“I mean, put it this way. I mean, did Sean Hannity change? Did Laura Ingraham change? Did Bret Baier change? Did The Five, the number one show in all of television change? Did Neil Cavuto change? I mean, what are you talking about?”

The interim host was correct that the rest of Fox‘s lineup remains unchanged, but the consequences of Carlson’s impact have been staggering. In addition to the network losing nearly two-thirds of its 8:00 pm audience, hosts Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham appear to have taken a substantial hit. On Wednesday, Hannity and Ingraham were estimated to have lost roughly 900,000 and 600,000 viewers, respectively, week-over-week, according to Nielsen ratings.

Still, Kilmeade defended Fox and even appeared to take Steven Bannon’s comments personally, lashing out at the War Room host.

“For Steve Bannon to come out and criticize Fox, really? This guy got, I guess, fired from the Trump administration… Then he gets himself in legal trouble and Trump pardons him, and now he’s a Trump loyalist. So, to me, I don’t know what they’re talking about. These are a bunch of people who think they can run this network and they can’t.”

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Bannon, a frequent critic of the network and its 92-year-old owner Rupert Murdoch, whipped Kilmeade in response,

“The Murdochs try to punch back [at] War Room with yapping puppy Kilmeade as he implodes in Tucker’s old slot… sad…”

Kilmeade concluded his stint as 8:00 pm interim host on Friday. Fox News says that Cross Country host Lawrence Jones will temporarily take over the slot starting Monday.

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