Russiagate queen reigns no more: Rachel Maddow ratings tank after collusion narrative implodes

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Once a shining beacon of hope for Russiagate true believers, it looks like Rachel Maddow has left her best days behind her; MSNBC’s conspiracy queen has seen her show plummet to fifth place in cable news ratings. What happened?

You rise fast and fall hard in the fickle world of television. Just last April, Maddow overtook Fox News’ Sean Hannity to claim the title of most-watched host across cable news. She had become a reliable source for Russigate aficionados to get their daily dose of crazy.

Sadly for Maddow, the latest data released by Nielsen shows her show in fifth place with a total audience of 2.4877 million viewers for July – behind Hannity, Tucker Carlson, Laura Ingraham and The Five (all Fox News shows).

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Top 5 Russia-conspiracy fails of Rachel ‘highest-ratings-ever’ Maddow

For context, in January this year, Maddow still boasted an audience of nearly 3.3 million, which means she shed around 800,000 viewers in just six months. Maddow was also in fifth place among viewers in the 25-54 age range – the group most-favored by advertisers.


Once dubbed “the smartest person on TV” by Forbes (really), this is certainly not the big payoff Maddow was expecting, having dedicated three years of her career to breathlessly covering every twist and turn in the anticlimactic Trump-Russia “collusion” drama.

There’s no question that Maddow lost a major component of what had made her show so popular when former special counsel Robert Mueller showed up in March having found no evidence of conspiracy or collusion between the 2016 Trump campaign and Russia.

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As former MSNBC host Krystal Ball noted last week in candid criticism of her former network colleague, Maddow had “built segment after segment, show after show, on building anticipation for a big reveal” that never materialized. Indeed, Maddow became something of an expert at promising her audience bombshells that never amounted to anything.

Recall the dramatic teaser tweet she sent out in March 2017 one hour before her show, claiming: “We’ve got Trump tax returns. (Seriously).” When the story turned out to be a big nothingburger (all she had was one boring form which revealed nothing particularly interesting), Maddow lashed out at her own viewers, saying people had “leapt” to conclusions.

Ball also accused Maddow of doing damage to the left, having become “swept up in the ratings bubble” that was being sustained by “feverish Russian conspiracy theories.”

It’s true. Seemingly convinced that the Russiagate story would end with Donald Trump being dragged from the White House in a dressing gown with shackles around his feet, Maddow had abandoned major issues that are important to the American left and trafficked in mental conspiracies and outright fear-mongering instead.

How about that time she suggested that Russia might kill the power in Fargo during a polar vortex and let everyone freeze to death? Or the time she spent three whole minutes dramatically building up to ‘reveal’ that Russia and North Korea share a border – followed by 15 more minutes trying to prove that Vladimir Putin had orchestrated and secretly controlled the Singapore summit between Trump and Kim Jong-un.

A study of her coverage by the Intercept last year showed that 53 percent of Maddow’s segments focused only on Russia over a six-week period between February and March.

Of course, there were no slaps on the wrist for Maddow at MSNBC HQ for getting stories drastically wrong or failing to deliver on her promises of Trump-destroying bombshells. In fact, it seemed the more dramatic and off-the-wall her coverage became, the more she was celebrated for it. This staggering fall from ratings grace can be her comeuppance.

Boo hoo, Rachel. If you need to cry, you could always use the piles of money you made from lies as tissues.

Danielle Ryan

Danielle Ryan is an Irish freelance writer based in Dublin. Her work has appeared in Salon, The Nation, Rethinking Russia, teleSUR, RBTH, The Calvert Journal and others.



Flashback: Maxine Waters Pictured With Antifa Leader Arrested for Beating 2 Marines

Waters asked to disavow attacker after Antifa firebomb attack on ICE facility

By Adan Salazar

Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Cali.) is facing scrutiny over a photo of her with an Antifa leader who was arrested for assault earlier this year.

The 2016 photo shows Waters attending an Americans for Financial Reform meeting and standing near Joseph Alcoff, a self-proclaimed Communist who allegedly led an Antifa mob attack against two Marines at a “We The People Rally” in Philadelphia in January.


“Maxine Waters in a photo-op with Joseph Alcoff,” highlighted Quillette journalist Andy Ngo on Twitter. “By day, Alcoff worked with congressional Democrats. Online, he advocated for brutal political violence. He’s facing felony charges for his alleged involvement in an antifa mob beating of two marines.”


Alcoff, the supposed leader of the Antifa group Smash Racism D.C. which protested outside Fox News anchor Tucker Carlson’s home in November 2018, was arrested along with two other Antifa members on felony charges of aggravated assault, ethnic intimidation and conspiracy.

Before his arrest, however, Alcoff was a highly influential member of the Democrat party.

From Fox News:

His endorsement apparently mattered when several congressional Democrats in February 2018 issued press releases with his quote backing their bill on regulating payday lenders.

As the payday campaign manager for the liberal group Americans for Financial Reform, Alcoff participated in congressional Democratic press conferences, was a guest on a House Democratic podcast and met with senior officials at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau from 2016 through 2018.

He was also pictured with now-House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters, D-Calif., and ranking Democrat on the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee Sen. Sherrod Brown of Ohio. Both committees oversee financial regulatory policies Alcoff was advocating.

Following this weekend’s Antifa firebomb attack on an ICE detention facility in Tacoma, Washingotn, which left the attacker dead, many on Twitter are asking Waters if she will condemn Alcoff’s attack and disavow his support.



Antifa Put Up Posters Doxing Tucker Carlson After He Spoke Out Against Iran War

By Chris Menahan – JUNE 24, 2019

While Tucker Carlson was working overtime encouraging President Trump not to go to war with Iran, antifa was busy putting up posters smearing him as an “alt-right racist” and sharing his family’s home address throughout Washington, DC.

As I reported over the past week, Tucker Carlson not only spoke out against the prospect of a war with Iran on his show but also allegedly spoke privately with President Trump and told him not to go to war with Iran.

His effort was successful (at least for the time being) with President Trump deciding not to strike Iran late Thursday night and it caused the establishment’s cronies to throw a fit.

As Tucker was working to prevent World War III, the antifa group “All Out DC” went to work attacking him and shared posters like the one below doxing his family’s home address.

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Twitter deleted some of their tweets but allowed the group to keep their account:

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Though the supposed pretext for sharing these signs was to protest a July 4th “Demand Free Speech” event, Tucker is not even an attendee.

Interestingly, the group don’t appear to have directed any of the same hatred towards Sean Hannity, who at the same time Tucker was speaking out against war with Iran was telling his viewers that Trump needs to “bomb the hell out” of Iran or else it’s mathematically guaranteed there will be another holocaust.

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The fact these groups are so out to get Tucker Carlson — the most prominent anti-war voice on all of TV — should give us a clue as to whom they serve.

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