Politico’s Dylan Byers makes a big deal about Jeff Zucker backing Piers Morgan having an opinion at a CNN Town Hall today…
Today’s meeting in New York was attended by at least 600 staffers, sources said. One described Zucker’s support for Morgan’s taking a position as “clear and unequivocal.”
And why wouldn’t he? Look, I’ve been slagging Zucker since his name first got put in the mix for CNN gig and my positions and stance (read: fear) of a Zucker CNN Presidency is still as great now as it was then. Zucker must prove to me by his actions that my fears are unfounded before I’ll change my opinion.
But on this issue Zucker has it 100% right. It’s not only right, it’s a total no-brainer. I’ve been saying for a long time now that Piers Morgan needs to start asserting himself more and match his polarizing (and very entertaining) Twitter feed. I don’t think Gun Control is the panacea that will achieve that goal. At best, it’s a short term issue, mileage wise, for him. But the point is Morgan is putting some stick about and causing commotion. You need to do that in cable news primetime. I think Zucker recognizes this and only a fool would throttle Morgan at this point. Provided that Morgan doesn’t go overboard to the point that he winds up with egg on his face…and, no, getting gun advocates ridiculing him doesn’t qualify…Zucker should back him.
But, all that said, this is a total non-story and probably the least interesting detail that could have emerged from this town hall. I would be a lot more interested in what else Zucker had to say, particularly if it touched the direction he’s planning on taking CNN. That would have far more impact on CNN as a whole than Zucker letting Morgan run with his gun control topic.