Nov 17, 2022 - Economy

CNN's Chris Licht: "I'm not afraid for us to call bull----"

Kara Swisher and Chris Licht

Photos: New York Magazine, CNN

Chris Licht, chairman and CEO of CNN Worldwide, joined Kara Swisher for a spicy edition of her "On" podcast for New York Magazine, ahead of CNN layoffs planned for early December.

What he's saying: "Look, these are my cuts," Licht said. "I own this. This is my strategy and if I thought that there was a cut that ... I thought would be ... not in the interest of this company, I would push back hard. And I've not had to do that."

  • "I want to expand the global dominance of CNN by doing two things," Licht added. "Engaging the people who are already coming to us, right? More, particularly on digital."
  • "And then creating a nimble news organization that can weather any storm and not only survive, but thrive — and using that currency to attract new audiences."

On his effort to move perceptions of CNN back to center, Licht said: "I'm not afraid for us to call bull---- when we need to call bull----."

  • "And if you look at our election night coverage, we literally labeled people 'election deniers' as the adjective, just as you would call them an incumbent."

Swisher asked if Licht considers Fox News to be a news outlet.

  • "I was not born yesterday. Come on," Licht answered.

Asked if he'd bring back Chris Cuomo, now at NewsNation, Licht replied before Swisher even said the fired anchor's last name: "Absolutely not."

  • When she asked about the status of Cuomo's lawsuit against CNN, Licht said: "Whatever, I don't know. It's not part of my world."

Listen to the podcast.

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