June 3, 2023

Howard Stern said last week that Donald Trump’s controversial town hall on CNN was “interesting to watch” — and suggested that the struggling cable network hosts similar events with other GOP presidential candidates.

“I don’t know, I thought it was f-king — really f-king interesting and entertaining,” he said on Monday’s edition of “The Howard Stern Show.”

“Everyone had their t-ts in a twist because Trump was there [CNN]and the audience laughed and cheered him on, and a lot of people got mad about it,” Stern said.

“I’m pretty sure everyone who didn’t like Trump hated him even more after that,” he added, though Trump’s “fans love him,” which Stern said made the May 10 town hall “interesting to watch.” look” made.

He then went on to say that CNN should give the other possible 2024 GOP nominees — namely Ron DeSantis, Tim Scott, and Nikki Haley — their moment on stage.

“They should have all the candidates if they want to,” Stern said on his SiriusXM radio show.

However, Stern criticized CNN for its live audience, which consisted of New Hampshire Republican and undecided voters.

"I don't know, I thought it was damn -- really damn interesting and entertaining," That's what Howard Stern said on Monday's SiriusXM radio show.
“I don’t know, I thought it was f-king — really f-king interesting and entertaining,” Howard Stern said on Monday’s edition of his SiriusXM radio show.
Kevin Mazur

“I thought it was really weird when they laughed at the woman who just won a sexual assault case. I thought that was really odd,” Stern said on Monday’s radio show, referring to a Manhattan jury’s decision on May 9 — just 24 hours before the city hall event — that the former president is liable for sexual assault and libel.

The decision came in a federal lawsuit brought by E. Jean Carroll, who accused Trump of raping her decades ago in a Bergdorf Goodman fitting room and then defaming her when he publicly denied her allegations.

Carroll was awarded $5 million for sexual assault and libel. The nine-member jury acquitted Trump of the rape claim.

Stern continued, “Some of those people in the audience looked a little bizarre, if you know what I mean. Maybe one or two had problems at birth, but I don’t know.

CNN receives Trump in network boss Chris Licht’s attempt to make CNN less partisan has not paid off in ratings.

On Friday, the embattled cable news network drew just 335,000 average viewers during its three-hour primetime block — a steep drop from the 3.3 million viewers Trump’s City Hall drew just two days earlier.

At last week’s town hall, Trump repeated conspiracy theories, including that the 2020 election was “rigged,” and pulled out receipts to prove his Jan. 6 response did not encourage insurrection.

CNN’s own longtime anchor Anderson Cooper slammed the network for filling the live audience with Trump-supporting voters.

Cooper said during the opening monologue of his CNN show “Anderson Cooper 360°”: “The audience you upset? That’s a sample of about half the country. It’s your relatives, your neighbors and they vote, and many said they vote for him.”

He also quoted Carroll’s lawsuit, saying, “It was certainly disturbing to hear that audience – young and old, our fellow citizens, people who love their children and go to church – laughing and applauding his lies and his constant slander of a woman who, according to a jury of his peers, he sexually assaulted and defamed.”

CNN broadcast Presidential City Hall with Donald Trump on May 10.  It earned the struggling network a record 3.3 million views.
CNN broadcast Presidential City Hall with Donald Trump on May 10. It attracted a record 3.3 million viewers for the struggling network.

Cooper went on to tell viewers that they have “the power to do something” about Trump’s chances of returning to work in the Oval Office. According to the Conservative Political Action Conference poll, Trump is the preferred candidate of 62% of right-wing voters.

Trump’s support was well above No. 2 Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who had 20% support despite the fact that he has yet to announce his 2024 candidacy.

Cooper, CNN’s most-watched host, also told his viewers that they “have every right to be angry and never watch this network again.”

It seemed a good chunk of his audience took up the offer, as Friday’s edition of the Cooper-hosted “AC360” drew 447,000 viewers at 8pm – well below his usual average.

On the same day, CNN’s rivals at Fox News won the primetime battle, averaging 1.44 million viewers, while MSNBC had 1.08 million.