CNN Doubles Down on Straight News

By Andrew Gauthier 


As rival cable networks cash in on commentary, CNN is betting big on straight news.

That was its message Thursday morning when it announced that John King–a former Associated Press reporter, White House correspondent, Magic Wall operator, and consummate straight newsman–would be replacing opinionated anchor Lou Dobbs in the network’s 7 p.m. time slot.

Three decades after Ted Turner revolutionized television news with the launch of CNN, it’s actually now viewed as counterintuitive for a cable network to commit more to straight news in the evening. And King himself seems something of a throwback.

“I think what is troubling in part of our business is you have people on news shows who start the conversation with a bias,” King told POLTICO from Montana.

That he called from snowy Helena is telling. It’s the 44th state King’s visited this year for his Sunday show, “State of the Union” and a testament to his belief that reporting is essential for breaking down the news on cable. More…