Former Fox News anchor Chris Wallace, who has been struggling to find an audience at CNN since he left his former network earlier this year, is not endearing himself to his former viewers.
In an appearance on HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher” on Friday, Wallace appeared to disparage his own father, Mike Wallace, along with a program that the now-deceased Wallace helped put on the TV map: “60 Minutes.”
“CBS and ABC and the other owners of the media viewed the news as a public service…I gotta be careful with this because I know you are a huge fan of 60 minutes but I kind of feel to a certain degree 60 Minutes and my father are responsible for what happened,” Chris Wallace told the host.
“60 Minutes made money and suddenly the executives said, ‘you can make money with new, and that led to more biased news coverage. 60 Minutes opened Pandora’s box where you can make money from news,” Chris Wallace added.
Maher said, “They don’t want to make people turn the dial the wrong way – except on this show. I’ve paid for that. There are lots of woke people who used to watch that don’t anymore. It’s just that the left went crazy, so I have to do it more.”
Wallace traced the problem back to the golden days of three major channels and the world tuning in at 6:30 PM to hear about the world from Walter Cronkite or Huntley-Brinkley.
Those programs drew audiences of as much as 29 million, but they weren’t profit centers. But the men who ran the networks at the time saw news as a public service, and if it didn’t lose an enormous amount of money, they were fine with that.
But when Chris Wallace’s father, Mike Wallace, and his 60 Minutes team started in 1968, things shifted. That show began making money…
Wallace left Fox News in the wake of a three-part program produced by Tucker Carlson for the network’s Fox Nation streaming service intimating that federal agents were involved in, and perhaps helped provoke, the Jan. 6 riot.
To that point, The New York Times reported in Sept. 2021 that the FBI had informants working within the crowd at ahead of the riot.
“As scores of Proud Boys made their way, chanting and shouting, toward the Capitol on Jan. 6, one member of the far-right group was busy texting a real-time account of the march. The recipient was his F.B.I. handler,” the Times reported Saturday.
“In the middle of an unfolding melee that shook a pillar of American democracy — the peaceful transfer of power — the bureau had an informant in the crowd, providing an inside glimpse of the action, according to confidential records obtained by The New York Times,” the paper noted further, adding later in the story that the informant actually entered the Capitol at one point.