Why Does CNN Have Such a Hard Time Finding (and Keeping) Pro-Trump Commentators?

Why does CNN have such a hard time holding on to its right-wing contributors? This weekend, former Trump campaign spokesman Jason Miller became the sixth conservative CNN contributor to lose his perch at the network since the 2016 election.

In just under two years, Corey Lewandowski, Scottie Nell Hughes, Jeffrey Lord, Ed Martin and Paris Dennard have also departed the network for reasons ranging from errant tweets to accusations of sexual misconduct.

While liberal stalwarts like Reza Azlan and Kathy Griffin have also been shown the door, Trump defenders have long been an endangered species at CNN.

Some suggest that the network has an antipathy for conservative voices. “People who support Trump, [CNN] treats them like second-class citizens,” said one insider who has appeared frequently on the channel but asked not to be identified. “There is an extraordinary target on anyone who is pro-Trump back at CNN.”

Also Read: CNN’s Pro-Trump Commentator Jason Miller Exits After Abortion Pill Accusations

“Sadly, CNN seems to have two standards: one for Trump supporters and an anything-goes standard for liberals or anti-Trumpers,” said Jeffrey Lord, a GOP strategist who was dumped by the network in August 2017 after tweeting the Nazi salute “Sieg heil” in an online spat.

CNN never announced any disciplinary action against liberal commentator Phil Mudd after he dropped the N-word on air in January during a live appearance with Don Lemon; he continues to appear frequently on the network. And Ryan Lizza, who was fired from the New Yorker last December after a sexual misconduct accusation, returned to CNN after a roughly six-week suspension by the network.

“One can sit on CNN and use all kinds of racial slurs, not to mention call the President of the United States Hitler or compare him to Stalin and more, and that’s OK,” Lord said. “It is incredibly sad to watch and I think very self-damaging to a network filled with serious professionals and good people for whom I have the greatest respect.”

Also Read: CNN’s Don Lemon Defends Antifa Despite Violence: ‘No Organization Is Perfect’ (Video)

Others suggest that the strongest and most reliably TV-ready right-wing commentators have been snapped up by Fox News, leaving its rival to lesser pundits who may not be as ready for the glare of the spotlight.

“If you’re talking about D-listers, it’s not people who are super-polished,” said another frequent CNN guest. “It’s people who were attracted to guerilla warfare. They won’t be the most accepted at the garden parties at the Louvre.”

For some, the network will face trouble no matter what given the extremes to which conservatives sometimes go to defend President Trump.

Also Read: CNN Suspends Pro-Trump Contributor After Old Sexual Misconduct Accusation

“The problem is with the position itself,” said Angelo Carusone, head of the left-wing watchdog group Media Matters for America, and the one on the receiving end of Lord’s tweeted Nazi salute.

“Trump says and does bigoted and contemptible things. So, when the job description is to always not merely defend but also often cheer Trump’s bigoted and contemptible conduct, it attracts a certain kind of applicant.”

CNN declined to comment for this story but an insider said the network was puzzled by the mass exodus of Trump commentators in the last two years.

“No one really knows,” the individual said. “It would be clearer if they were leaving all for the same reason, but that’s not the case.”

Also Read: CNN Slammed Over GOP Women Panel Defending Kavanaugh

Still, the network’s challenge in retaining right-leaning voices is real. In a statement on Saturday, Miller said he decided to voluntarily “step away” from CNN following an accusation by a former lover that he secretly gave another ex abortion pills contained in a smoothie (he has denied the accusation).

Miller’s ouster comes cuts one month after CNN suspended Paris Dennard, a former official in the George W. Bush administration who faced a sexual misconduct accusation stemming from his time as an events director at Arizona State University.

Just days before, Dennard had earned praise from conservatives — and a tweeted shout-out from President Trump — for a bruising on-air dog fight with Mudd over whether retired government officials like ex-CIA chief John Brennan could score extra cash by leveraging their security clearances.

A CNN spokesperson declined to elaborate on the status of its investigation into Dennard.

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Why does CNN have such a hard time holding on to its right-wing contributors? This weekend, former Trump campaign spokesman Jason Miller became the sixth conservative CNN contributor to lose his perch at the network since the 2016 election.

In just under two years, Corey Lewandowski, Scottie Nell Hughes, Jeffrey Lord, Ed Martin and Paris Dennard have also departed the network for reasons ranging from errant tweets to accusations of sexual misconduct.

While liberal stalwarts like Reza Azlan and Kathy Griffin have also been shown the door, Trump defenders have long been an endangered species at CNN.

Some suggest that the network has an antipathy for conservative voices. “People who support Trump, [CNN] treats them like second-class citizens,” said one insider who has appeared frequently on the channel but asked not to be identified. “There is an extraordinary target on anyone who is pro-Trump back at CNN.”

“Sadly, CNN seems to have two standards: one for Trump supporters and an anything-goes standard for liberals or anti-Trumpers,” said Jeffrey Lord, a GOP strategist who was dumped by the network in August 2017 after tweeting the Nazi salute “Sieg heil” in an online spat.

CNN never announced any disciplinary action against liberal commentator Phil Mudd after he dropped the N-word on air in January during a live appearance with Don Lemon; he continues to appear frequently on the network. And Ryan Lizza, who was fired from the New Yorker last December after a sexual misconduct accusation, returned to CNN after a roughly six-week suspension by the network.

“One can sit on CNN and use all kinds of racial slurs, not to mention call the President of the United States Hitler or compare him to Stalin and more, and that’s OK,” Lord said. “It is incredibly sad to watch and I think very self-damaging to a network filled with serious professionals and good people for whom I have the greatest respect.”

Others suggest that the strongest and most reliably TV-ready right-wing commentators have been snapped up by Fox News, leaving its rival to lesser pundits who may not be as ready for the glare of the spotlight.

“If you’re talking about D-listers, it’s not people who are super-polished,” said another frequent CNN guest. “It’s people who were attracted to guerilla warfare. They won’t be the most accepted at the garden parties at the Louvre.”

For some, the network will face trouble no matter what given the extremes to which conservatives sometimes go to defend President Trump.

“The problem is with the position itself,” said Angelo Carusone, head of the left-wing watchdog group Media Matters for America, and the one on the receiving end of Lord’s tweeted Nazi salute.

“Trump says and does bigoted and contemptible things. So, when the job description is to always not merely defend but also often cheer Trump’s bigoted and contemptible conduct, it attracts a certain kind of applicant.”

CNN declined to comment for this story but an insider said the network was puzzled by the mass exodus of Trump commentators in the last two years.

“No one really knows,” the individual said. “It would be clearer if they were leaving all for the same reason, but that’s not the case.”

Still, the network’s challenge in retaining right-leaning voices is real. In a statement on Saturday, Miller said he decided to voluntarily “step away” from CNN following an accusation by a former lover that he secretly gave another ex abortion pills contained in a smoothie (he has denied the accusation).

Miller’s ouster comes cuts one month after CNN suspended Paris Dennard, a former official in the George W. Bush administration who faced a sexual misconduct accusation stemming from his time as an events director at Arizona State University.

Just days before, Dennard had earned praise from conservatives — and a tweeted shout-out from President Trump — for a bruising on-air dog fight with Mudd over whether retired government officials like ex-CIA chief John Brennan could score extra cash by leveraging their security clearances.

A CNN spokesperson declined to elaborate on the status of its investigation into Dennard.

Related stories from TheWrap:

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CNN Suspends Contributor Paris Dennard Over Sexual Misconduct Report

CNN has suspended contributor Paris Dennard, Variety has confirmed. Dennard, a reliably pro-Trump contributor on CNN, was the subject of a Wednesday report by the Washington Post, which revealed he had been fired by Arizona State University four years …

CNN has suspended contributor Paris Dennard, Variety has confirmed. Dennard, a reliably pro-Trump contributor on CNN, was the subject of a Wednesday report by the Washington Post, which revealed he had been fired by Arizona State University four years ago for alleged sexual harassment. According to the report, Dennard was accused of “making sexually explicit […]

CNN Suspends Pro-Trump Contributor After Old Sexual Misconduct Accusation

CNN has suspended pro-Trump contributor Paris Dennard after the Washington Post published an allegation of sexual misconduct stemming from his time working at Arizona State University in 2014.
“We are aware of reports of accusations against Paris…

CNN has suspended pro-Trump contributor Paris Dennard after the Washington Post published an allegation of sexual misconduct stemming from his time working at Arizona State University in 2014.

“We are aware of reports of accusations against Paris Dennard. We are suspending Paris, effective immediately, while ‎we look into the allegations,” a CNN spokesperson told TheWrap late Wednesday evening.

According to the Post, Dennard was ousted from the school’s McCain Institute for International Leadership after an internal investigation over an allegation brought by a former student who said Dennard pressed her for sex.

“He ‘pretended to unzip his pants in her presence, tried to get her to sit on his lap, and made masturbatory gestures,'” the reports says according to a copy which the paper says they obtained.

Dennard did not immediately respond to inquiries from TheWrap over either the 2014 allegation or the CNN suspension, but he told the Post that he had never seen the full findings from the internal investigation and suggested his dismissal at the time was politically motivated.

“I cannot comment on items I have never seen regarding allegations I still believe to be false,” he told the paper via email. “This is sadly another politically motivated attempt to besmirch my character, and shame me into silence for my support of President Trump and the GOP.”

Dennard, who held various positions in the George W. Bush White House has become known in recent months for his pro-Trump commentary on CNN. He is also a frequent opinion contributor to The Hill and makes regular appearances on the NPR program “Here & Now.”

Dennard came to wider public prominence earlier this week after a tough exchange with CNN contributor Phillip Mudd, which earned him a direct shoutout from the President of the United States on Twitter. Trump also blasted Mudd, a former CIA operative, and warned that he might revoke his security clearance.

If Dennard is ultimately ousted for good, he will become the latest pro-Trump conservative to come and go at the network in what has become an increasingly troubled role. Last year, Jeffrey Lord — also known for his colorful commentary defending the president — was fired by CNN after he tweeted “sieg heil” at a critic.  And in January of this year, his replacement Ed Martin, was also dropped from the network after a desultory four month stint.

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CNN Suspends Paris Dennard In Wake Of Sexual Misconduct Reports

CNN announced that they have suspended contributor Paris Dennard after it was reported he was fired from a previous job for sexual misconduct.
According to The Washington Post, Dennard was terminated from his job at Arizona State University in 2014 “fo…

CNN announced that they have suspended contributor Paris Dennard after it was reported he was fired from a previous job for sexual misconduct. According to The Washington Post, Dennard was terminated from his job at Arizona State University in 2014 "for making sexually explicit comments and gestures toward women, according to documents and a university official." While working as events director at the university’s McCain Institute for International Leadership, The Washing…

Trump Drops Black History Month Shocker: ‘Omarosa Is Actually a Very Nice Person’ (Video)

President Donald Trump dedicated a portion of his Black History Month gathering with black supporters on Wednesday to sharing a little known fact about former “Apprentice” contestant and current White House staff member Omarosa Manigault. Turns out, she’s actually pretty cool.

“I want to thank my television star over here — Omarosa’s actually a very nice person. Nobody knows that,” he said during what he described as a “little get-together,” during which he briefly mentioned civil rights icon Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and abolitionist movement leader Frederick Douglass while heaping praise on other supporters in the room, including Ben Carson.

“I don’t want to destroy her reputation,” he continued. “She is a very good person and she’s been helpful right from the beginning with the campaign and I appreciate it, I really do. Very special. So I want to thank everybody for being here. “

See Video: Watch Omarosa Get Prickly Defending Her Trump Support on ‘The View’: ‘No One Uses Me’

You can read the full transcript of Trump’s remarks below.

This is a full transcript of President Trump’s speech to his Black History Month event. pic.twitter.com/uJ9iXvUOGr

— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) February 1, 2017

Manigault’s White House title is assistant to the president and director of communications for the Office of Public Liaison.” She has been a Trump ally since appearing on the first season of NBC reality show “The Apprentice.”

Manigault previously worked for Trump’s presidential campaign as his director of African-American outreach. Before that, she described herself as a Democrat and briefly worked in the office of Vice President Al Gore during President Bill Clinton’s administration.

In between letting his various guests speak while seated around a table in the White House, President Trump also blasted CNN as “fake news” and hostile” while praising African-American CNN commentator and GOP strategist Paris Dennard.

Also Read: Trump Blasts CNN as ‘Fake News’ During Black History Month Event (Video)

“He’s all by himself, seven people and Paris. I’ll take Paris over the seven,” Trump said. “But I don’t watch CNN so I don’t get to see you as much.”

The room full of press and supporters seemed to laugh at every comment made by Trump until he said, “I don’t like watching fake news,” which didn’t draw much of a reaction.

Watch the entire meeting in the video above.

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President Donald Trump dedicated a portion of his Black History Month gathering with black supporters on Wednesday to sharing a little known fact about former “Apprentice” contestant and current White House staff member Omarosa Manigault. Turns out, she’s actually pretty cool.

“I want to thank my television star over here — Omarosa’s actually a very nice person. Nobody knows that,” he said during what he described as a “little get-together,” during which he briefly mentioned civil rights icon Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and abolitionist movement leader Frederick Douglass while heaping praise on other supporters in the room, including Ben Carson.

“I don’t want to destroy her reputation,” he continued. “She is a very good person and she’s been helpful right from the beginning with the campaign and I appreciate it, I really do. Very special. So I want to thank everybody for being here. “

You can read the full transcript of Trump’s remarks below.

Manigault’s White House title is assistant to the president and director of communications for the Office of Public Liaison.” She has been a Trump ally since appearing on the first season of NBC reality show “The Apprentice.”

Manigault previously worked for Trump’s presidential campaign as his director of African-American outreach. Before that, she described herself as a Democrat and briefly worked in the office of Vice President Al Gore during President Bill Clinton’s administration.

In between letting his various guests speak while seated around a table in the White House, President Trump also blasted CNN as “fake news” and hostile” while praising African-American CNN commentator and GOP strategist Paris Dennard.

“He’s all by himself, seven people and Paris. I’ll take Paris over the seven,” Trump said. “But I don’t watch CNN so I don’t get to see you as much.”

The room full of press and supporters seemed to laugh at every comment made by Trump until he said, “I don’t like watching fake news,” which didn’t draw much of a reaction.

Watch the entire meeting in the video above.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Donald Trump Will Reveal Supreme Court Pick on Primetime TV

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