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Newsmax guest host Matt Gaetz beats CNN in the ratings

Newsmax guest host Matt Gaetz beats CNN in the ratings

Ratings-challenged CNN hit a new nadir as the once-dominant news channel was beaten by conservative cable channel Newsmax in a primetime slot guest-hosted by Florida Congressman Matt Gaetz.

The lightning-rod Republican drew 282,000 viewers as he sat in for Greg Kelly for Friday’s 10 p.m. show — besting the 249,000 who tuned in to watch CNN’s star anchor Anderson Cooper’s in-depth program, “The Whole Story With Anderson Cooper.”

CNN has been attempting to pivot from the left-leaning coverage during the Trump administration. But that has seemingly come at the expense of its core audience.

In recent weeks, Newsmax has topped CNN in several time slots — particularly with Eric Bolling beating Cooper’s main show, “AC306,” at 8 p.m.

Bolling’s ratings boost follows the firing of Tucker Carlson from Fox News, as well as the continued fallout from CNN’s controversial Donald Trump town hall.

CNN did manage to eke out a win on Friday over Gaetz in the key 25-54 age demographic, with 41,000 viewers to Newsmax’s 38,000.

Both networks lagged far behind the programs aired at 10 p.m. by rivals Fox News and MSNBC.

“The Ingraham Angle” logged 1.2 million viewers and 106,000 demo viewers for Fox, while “Deadline White House” drew 922,000 and 83,000 on MSNBC.

Gaetz hosting Newsmax’s 10 p.m. hour drew more viewers than CNN in the same time slot, according to Nielsen ratings.

Newsmax turned to Gaetz again Monday night, but those ratings were not yet available.

Gaetz has some previous hosting experience under his belt. In January, he interviewed embattled Rep. George Santos (R-NY) while guest-hosting Steve Bannon’s “War Room” podcast.

Gaetz, who drew national headlines earlier in the year for holding up the House speakership vote, also hosts his own podcast and is a regular guest on a podcast hosted by Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.), as well as across right-wing media.

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