Tags: John Kerry | CNN | ratings | insult | joke

John Kerry Hits CNN Below the Ratings Belt

Monday, 10 Mar 2014 12:34 PM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

Secretary of State John Kerry dropped a bomb on free-falling CNN during his speech at Washington's annual Gridiron Club dinner, hosted by the city's most prestigious press group.

Kerry, who was the keynote speaker at the white-tie-and-tails dinner Saturday, said the network's John King had asked him if he was considering running for president in 2016, and his response was brutal, reports Politico

"I am out of politics — and based on the ratings, so is CNN," Kerry said.

Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, the Democratic speaker at the press dinner, also took a shot at CNN's troubles.

"You know things are bad at CNN when they say they may go to a print edition," Crist joked during his speech, which was delivered the night before he was scheduled to appear on the network's "State of the Union."

The Gridiron Club's 65 members include some of the capital's most notable reporters, editors, and bureau chiefs, and the dinner was the club's 129th such event.

CNN's ratings are continuing their downhill spiral, with the network's prime-time shows losing half their audience compared to February 2013, according to the latest Nielsen ratings report

Meanwhile, Fox News Channel is the only cable network whose total viewers climbed since this time last year.

While Kerry made his comment to CNN into a joke, he did recently tell the network's Jake Tapper that "one of the joys" of being secretary of state is that he's out of politics.

Story continues below video.

"I have no plans whatsoever. This is my last stop," he told Tapper, refusing comment on other candidates.

Ironically, if Kerry should choose to run for office, he would likely attract voters, reports The Fiscal Times, as a recent Gallup Poll shows that 55 percent of Americans surveyed gave the former Massachusetts senator favorable ratings, an increase of 7 percentage points since last September.

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