Then there is the technical snafus. Wednesday’s episode of “Greg Kelly Reports” opened on a blank screen. After 12 seconds, the host appeared, in the middle of a monologue.
None of this has stopped Mr Kelly from attracting an audience around four times the size of TBEN’s Shepard Smith, a former Fox News presenter whose heavily promoted new program airs against him at 7 p.m. .
Fox News, which has benefited enormously from Mr. Trump’s rise to prominence, easily beats Newsmax in terms of overall audience. But since the network launched the race for Mr. Biden, Trump supporters have chanted “Fox News sucks!” during protests in Arizona and Washington, and his ratings have fallen well below pre-election levels.
Much of the drop came during the day, when his newscasters acknowledge Mr. Biden’s victory. But several Fox News opinion shows also saw a decline: Earlier this month, for the first time in 19 years, “Fox & Friends” drew a smaller weekly audience than MSNBC’s “Morning Joe”.
The loss of viewers has set off alarm bells inside Fox News, said several people with links to the network who spoke on condition of anonymity to avoid strained relations. A new slogan promoting its pro-Trump opinion leaders – “Stand up for what’s right” – is now in heavy rotation.
“There is a ton of discontent with Fox News in conservative circles,” said Nicole Hemmer, a Columbia University scholar who studies right-wing media.
Tensions have spilled over into Fox News programming. On “The Five,” Geraldo Rivera attacked pro-Trump colleague Jesse Watters for endorsing baseless claims about a stolen election. In prime time, Tucker Carlson cast doubt on claims by Sidney Powell, a lawyer for Trump, that she had not produced evidence of electoral fraud. But in the next hour, Mr Hannity invited another Trump lawyer, Rudolph W. Giuliani, to share his baseless claims with viewers.