As though MSNBC doesn’t have enough ratings problems, the recent decision to dump the working class Ed Schultz for Rachel Maddow doppelganger Chris Hayes is also blowing up in the Lean Forward network’s face. MSNBC president Phil Griffin probably thought two Rachel Maddows would be better than one, but Hayes as lost 30% of Schultz’s viewers and as Maddow’s lead-in, her ratings are suffering as a result:
Even Ms. Maddow’s ratings tumbled sharply in May, at least partly because the network’s new host at 8 p.m., Chris Hayes, has lost more than 30 percent of the audience in the hour before Ms. Maddow’s show. (Mr. Griffin, who defended the decision to bring in Mr. Hayes, said the show had been hurt by the discord in Washington, and vowed to stick with it after “some tweaking.”)
How do you tweak away smug, unlikable, dishonest, and wrong about everything…?
Here’s what I think the problem is: MSNBC is confusing its audience. People haven’t yet realized that Chris Hayes is Chris Hayes. They think Hayes is Maddow. So they don’t watch Maddow afterwards because they think they already have.
Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC