CNN is making no mistake about it: It wants to censor and close Newsmax from broadcasting as a cable news channel.
Apparently jolted by the fact Newsmax has skyrocketed to become the 4th highest-rated cable news channel in the country, the liberal CNN is decrying what it calls Newsmax's "election denialism" and is seeking to have it "deplatformed" from cable and satellite systems across the nation.
Oliver Darcy, CNN's leftwing media critic, has been demanding cable operators drop Newsmax, which is currently carried by every major system in the nation. Newsmax is also streamed free by most OTT platforms and devices.
In a CNN column in early January, Darcy falsely claimed conservative media caused the protests at the Capitol on Jan. 6.
"After all, it was the very lies that Fox, Newsmax, and OAN spread that helped prime President Trump's supporters into not believing the truth: That he lost an honest and fair election," Darcy wrote.
Darcy's demands have been echoed on CNN's shows, including their Sunday media show "Reliable Sources" hosted by liberal media analyst Brian Stelter.
On this week's Sunday show, Stelter's guests focused on deplatforming Newsmax.
Previously, CNN had led efforts to deplatform President Donald Trump from Twitter.
"We are going to have to figure out the OANN and Newsmax problem," Alex Stamos, a former Facebook chief security officer, told CNN's Stelter. "These companies have freedom of speech, but I'm not sure we need Verizon, AT&T, Comcast, and such bringing them into tens of millions of homes."
In a brazen call for censorship, Stamos echoed CNN demand conservative voices and news outlets be blacklisted and closed out of cable television and the Internet.
"We have to turn down the capability of these conservative influencers to reach these huge audiences," Stamos said. "There are people on YouTube that have larger daytime audiences than CNN."
Darcy doubled down, advancing the McCarthy-like political witch hunt by tweeting a fresh demand cable operators which carry Newsmax consider closing down the outlet:
"Just a reminder that neither @Verizon, @ATT, nor @comcast have answered any questions about why they beam channels like OAN [sic] & Newsmax into millions of homes. Do they have any second thoughts about distributing these channels given their election denialism content? They won't say."
In his tweet, Darcy failed to note AT&T is the parent company of CNN, and by removing Newsmax from cable lineups it reduces serious competition for his network, especially as Newsmax continues to rapidly increase audience and is on a trajectory to overtake CNN in viewership.
While far-left activists jumped to support a potential silencing of Newsmax, others noted the censorship effort runs afoul of both freedom of speech and anti-trust laws.
Former Bush White House press secretary Ari Fleischer exposed the hypocrisy, if not double standard, of the suggestion of silencing conservative channels, tweeting:
"You knew it would happen. Some want to take conservative media off the air because they bought into Trump's election theories. On those grounds, shouldn't CNN, ABC, CBS and NBC be taken off the air because they bought into [Russian] collusion theories? This censorship must stop."
In a statement released Sunday, Newsmax said, contrary to Darcy's and Stamos' claims, Newsmax never denied the election results.
The network called all contested states for Biden as they were certified and accepted him as president-elect Dec. 14, after the meeting of the Electoral College.
Newsmax also noted, while it justifiably covered the president's allegations about the election, and interviewed his lawyers and supporters – as did Fox News and Fox Business News, it never said all allegations were true.
The network did note, after years of CNN falsely claiming the Steele Dossier was valid and the Russian collusion claim against Trump was credible, it was never held accountable for its misreporting. Newsmax never called for CNN to be shut down.
Eric Mack ✉
Eric Mack has been a writer and editor at Newsmax since 2016. He is a 1998 Syracuse University journalism graduate and a New York Press Association award-winning writer.
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