- The Washington Times - Wednesday, November 20, 2019

That’s a shame. America’s TV networks went and shook up their normal schedules to accommodate the House impeachment hearings against President Trump — no doubt expecting blockbuster accounts and breathless moments, which would surely force him out of office.

Well, at least in the dreams of the liberal media — who perhaps recalled that when President Richard Nixon resigned on live television 45 years ago, the audience numbered 120 million people.

But aggressive commentary, melodrama, live updates and fancy graphics do not guarantee a compelling production.


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“Over and over we’ve heard from Democrats and the media that the next hearing, the next witness, the next testimony would be the bombshell they’ve been promising, only to have it fizzle out like all the rest. It has happened yet again. Ambassador Gordon Sondland said repeatedly that President Trump directly told him he wanted nothing from Ukraine. Sondland also testified that no one — no one — ever told him that Ukraine aid was tied to investigations. In a normal world this would be the end of the story, but in Washington, D.C., the Democrats’ sham impeachment rolls on — to the detriment of the American people,” says Kayleigh McEnany, national press secretary for Mr. Trump’s campaign.

Uh-huh. Which left those news organizations with falling ratings and a tepid response from the public. The hearings, Axios notes, must “fight” for an audience for multiple reasons — from viewer fatigue and disinterest to their rejection of what appears to be a predetermined outcome.



“The ultimate reason for the hearings’ lack of pizzazz is that no high crime exists, and hours and hours of probing won’t yield one,” writes George Neumayr, contributing editor to The American Spectator.

“Even if you put the worst possible construction on Trump’s behavior, it is still not an impeachable offense,” he says, adding that Democrats even consider the president’s tweets to be impeachable conduct and witness tampering.

“Dems obviously find such language thrilling, but the American people have heard it all before and are tuning it out. None of what has been discussed during the impeachment hearings so far could possibly shock them. It amounts to tsk-tsking the imprudent optics of Donald Trump, which is hardly grounds for impeachment,” Mr. Neumayr continues.

“To hear the hyperventilating of the Democrats, one would think their witnesses were whistleblowers at a concentration camp. In truth, they are just unelected bureaucrats second-guessing the foreign policy of the chief executive,” he says.

“That Trump’s bark is worse than his bite is something the American people came to terms with a long time ago. They don’t want a president impeached for his personality tics,” Mr. Neumayr adds.

THE ‘BORING’ FACTOR

The aforementioned hearings sparked a run on the word “boring” among many news organizations, for better or worse.

A few recent headlines: “Republicans say impeachment hearings are super boring” (BuzzFeed News); “Why Fox News wants you to think the hearings are boring” (CNN); “I’m sorry but is impeachment too boring for you?” (The New York Times); “Impeachment hearings are boring. No one cares. Get over it” (Washington Free Beacon); “For televised impeachment hearings, ‘boring’ is helpful to Democrats” (The Hill); “A historic, important impeachment? How about boring and repetitive?” (Toronto Star).

MEANWHILE IN NEW HAMPSHIRE

Granite State voters are revving up for their “first in the nation” status during a presidential election, and most don’t take this status lightly as 2020 looms. All that said, here’s how they feel about President Trump at the moment, according to a survey conducted by Saint Anselm College and the New Hampshire Institute of Politics.

It found that 87% say Mr. Trump will not be removed from office, 52% say he will be reelected and 45% approve of the job Mr. Trump is doing.

The poll of 512 registered New Hampshire voters was conducted Nov. 13-18.

BRIAN KILMEADE AND HIS BOOK

“Fox & Friends” co-host, radio host and bestselling author Brian Kilmeade has a definite taste for robust history. His fifth nonfiction account of a national hero has just been published — that would be “Sam Houston and the Alamo Avengers: The Texas Victory That Changed American History.”

The new book “sheds light on the tightrope all war heroes walk between courage and calculation,” according to publisher Sentinel Books. Mr. Kilmeade, who is seen on the popular Fox News morning show five days a week — has also told the battlefield stories of Presidents George Washington, Andrew Jackson and Thomas Jefferson, to name a few.

The author will also be in the nation’s capital Thursday to have a say, hosting a cocktail reception for quite a few friends  — “a few hundred media colleagues, friends, other guests to be exact,” a source advises. The soiree takes place in offices of Pinkston, a strategic communications firm.

FOXIFIED ONLINE

Fox News has been rated the No. 1 cable news network for almost 18 years, and has drawn the largest impeachment-hearing audiences of any cable or broadcast network in the nation in the past week. It also is ruling the online realm as well.

Fox News Digital finished October delivering its largest month of multiplatform views to date, according to Comscore, an industry source. The number of online fans is, well, astonishing.

Fox News Digital secured 1.9 billion multiplatform views, a 24% increase from October 2018 and 4.1 billion total minutes at the site, a 10% increase in the last year. Fox News Digital also topped the competition in both views and minutes outpacing CNN.com (1.8 billion views/3.4 billion minutes), NYTimes.com (1.2 billion/1.1 billion) and WashingtonPost.com (468 million/1.2 billion).

“Our digital reporting platform has become a one-stop shop for providing our television audience with the very best original content they have come to expect from our brand, and the numbers prove it,” notes Porter Berry, Fox News Digital editor-in-chief.

POLL DU JOUR

35% of Americans say the Democratic Party is “more divided than usual”; 21% say the same of the Republican Party.

28% say the Democratic Party has the “usual” amount of unity; 34% say the same of the Republican Party.

19% say the Democratic Party is “more united” than usual; 26% say the same of the Republicans.

19% are not sure how united or divided the Democratic Party is; 19% say the same of the Republicans.

Source: AN ECONOMIST / YOUGOV poll of 1,500 U.S. ADULTS conducted NOV. 17-19.

• Kindly follow Jennifer Harper on Twitter @HarperBulletin

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