Piers Morgan, with 17.6% of O’Reilly’s viewership, thinks he’ll beat him

Many champion Morgan’s ongoing dedication to the gun issue. | John Shinkle/POLITICO

Many champion Morgan’s ongoing dedication to the gun issue. | John Shinkle/POLITICO

FOXNEWS O’REILLY 3,356,000
DISC AMISH MAFIA 3,200,000
FOXNEWS FIVE 2,323,000
FOXNEWS HANNITY 2,276,000
FOXNEWS BAIER 2,235,000
FOXNEWS SHEP 1,813,000
CMDY DAILY SHOW 1,790,000
FOXNEWS GRETA 1,637,000
CMDY COLBERT 1,360,000
MSNBC MADDOW 1,096,000
MSNBC SCHULTZ 1,020,000
MSNBC HARDBALL 875,000
MSNBC SHARPTON 839,000
MSNBC O’DONNELL 831,000
CNN COOPER 604,000
CNN PIERS 592,000

Discovery Channel’s Amish Mafia has more viewers than Piers. Yet, with these rankings, he said the following in an interview today with POLITICO:

“It’s been a bumpy ride,” he continued. “But Bill O’Reilly took three or four years to get going at Fox. Rachel Maddow the same at MSNBC. It’s particularly difficult when you’re replacing a legend like Larry King. But I now feel that the atmosphere in the building is as competitive as I’ve known it.”

In an address to New York staff earlier this week, incoming CNN president Jeff Zucker expressed support for Morgan’s decision to take a stance on the gun control issue, Morgan said. He also said that CNN needed more personality and more differentiation — all signs that Morgan’s approach is emblematic of the network’s future.

“Jeff Zucker believes you’ve got to be unafraid to expand the breadth of what news is,” he said. “There are many different ways of categorizing news. It doesn’t have to be just war and famine and serious politics. And CNN has veered too much to that in the past few years, and been too afraid to go after other stories.”

“We’re still the best when it matters, when the big stuff happens. But we have been a little bit slow to react to the competition, and we should have more personalities on the network unafraid to express opinions,” he continued. “It should be more lively, independent programming, unique to each hour. Because when there’s not much happening, having that on a repeat cycle hour after hour after hour is dull television.”

Asked if he believed that he could one day compete with the likes of O’Reilly and Maddow, Morgan said, “absolutely.”

“Bill O’Reilly is like a comfortable pair of shimmeringly angry slippers, but you know every night what you’re going to get,” Morgan said. “It’s consistent. It hits all the right buttons if you like that kind of thing. And while I don’t agree with a lot of it, I thoroughly enjoy watching it and can admire the professionalism. The same with Rachel Maddow, I can watch it without agreeing with some of the things she says, but absolutely admire the professionalism.”

I asked Morgan if there was a governing principle to his own show, something that gave him an edge to make up for the lack of O’Reilly and Maddow’s partisanship.

“I prefer to be a slightly uncomfortable pair of slippers,” he continued. “You’re going to come to it every night, but it’s not going to be the smoothest pair of slippers you’ve ever tried on.

“I’d like it to be edgy and provocative and challenging,” Morgan added. ”When you’ve had a week of that maybe on a Friday night you have an hour of me and Charlie Sheen just sitting back and riffing about life in the Universe, you watch it for an hour, and rather than be some pompous, D.C., political hack, whose never done anything else in his life, who sits there going, Why isn’t he only asking him about the debt ceiling!? — which is possibly the most boring story in the history of politics — they can actually watch an hour of Charlie Sheen and think, that was fascinating and entertaining and funny, and above all, great television.”

And, he treats conservative Dana Loesch like this:

So how is it that Piers, whom many Americans would like to see deported, is going to compete with Bill O’Reilly?

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Comments

  1. “… King’s average of 655,000 in his final year.” http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datablog/2012/jan/09/piers-morgan-larry-king-ratings-war
    Larry King left CNN because of poor ratings and Morgan isn’t even above King’s worst year. Piers Morgan might think he is relevant, but Americans know better.

  2. abaworlock says:

    Hes such a douchebag. He seems to fail at most interviews.

  3. Side note. My sis produces amish mafia.

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