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CNN Shares Text Messages Between Mark Meadows, Sean Hannity

Meadows and Hannity exchanged more than 80 text messages between Election Day 2020 and Joe Biden’s January 2021 inauguration.

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The investigation into the January 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol continues. The latest news to come out is that former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows and Fox New’s Sean Hannity exchanged more than 80 text messages between Election Day 2020 and Joe Biden’s January 2021 inauguration.

CNN acquired Meadows’ 2,319 text messages which he selectively supplied to the House committee in December. 

The discussions that these text messages show Hannity’s transition from a staunch supporter of former President Donald Trump’s election lies to being “fed up” with the “lunatics” damaging Trump’s cause in the days before January 6.

Furthermore, these messages, including dozens of newly disclosed texts, offer a real-time view of how Hannity reacted to the election and its aftermath.

One of the discussions via text that CNN disclosed is over the afternoon of Election Day; Hannity communicated with Meadows at 1:36 p.m. to ask about turnout in North Carolina.

“Stress every vote matters. Get out and vote. On radio,” Meadows responded. “Yes sir,” Hannity replied. “On it. Any place in particular we need a push.”

“Pennsylvania. NC AZ,” Meadows wrote, adding: “Nevada.”

“Got it. Everywhere,” Hannity said.

The texts also reveal the two men were discussing Trump’s approach to challenging the election, complaining about Fox, and planning around what to do after Trump left office, including conceivably working together.

“You also need to spend at least half your time doing business with us,” Hannity texted Meadows on December 12. “And I’m serious. Did u ever talk to Fox. I’ve been at war with them.”

“I agree. We can make a powerful team,” Meadows responded. “I did not talk with (Fox News CEO) Suzanne (Scott) because I got tied up with pardons, but I will make sure I connect. You are a true patriot, and I am so very proud of you! Your friendship means a great deal to me.”

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News Television

Sinclair CEO Says Political Environment Is “Very Good for Our Business”

Sinclair’s CEO, Chris Ripley, offered his perspective on political ads at the MoffettNathanson 9th Annual Media and Communications Summit.

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The midterm elections are here, and according to one television executive, it’s the best time considering the amount of political advertisement money pouring into stations at the local and national. 

One key beneficiary of that cash inflow is Sinclair Broadcast Group, the No. 2 owner of local TV stations in the U.S. The company’s CEO, Chris Ripley, offered his perspective on political ads at the MoffettNathanson 9th Annual Media and Communications Summit.

“Some of these primary races are crazy,” Ripley said, per Deadline. “On the one hand, I lament that we’re in the political environment that we are. On the other hand, it’s very good for our business.”

Ripley used an example to make a point with his claim, citing U.S. Senate candidate J.D. Vance who won his primary race after spending a heavy amount ont television ads. 

Furthermore, the television executive adds that the $75 million spent on TV ads for the primary was 40 times more than what was spent on the primary in the last election. Ripley also added that spending on ballots is also up and should continue to increase as issues like abortion and legal gambling arise. 

“More and more issues are going on direct ballots,” he said. “With what’s going on with abortion rights, that’s going to just even add to that category.” Legalizing sports betting or cannabis are other issues generating significant ad spending.

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News Television

NBC News Correspondent Pete Williams to Retire

Williams will remain with NBC News through July before calling it a career. 

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NBC News

NBC News has announced Justice Department and Supreme Court correspondent Pete Williams will be retiring from the company. The reporter has been with the network for nearly three decades and has been at the forefront of many breaking news stories in Washington, DC. 

“Pete has been one of the nation’s foremost authorities covering the Supreme Court and the Department of Justice for nearly three decades,” NBC News President Noah Oppenheim said in a memo to staff

“His career has been defined by his reputation for accuracy, reliability, and unmatched expertise in the subjects he covers.” 

Williams has covered various topics for NBC News, including the court cases dealing with the Affordable Care Act and marriage equality. Earlier this year, the correspondent was the one who reported the news that Supreme Court Justice Stephen G. Breyer would retire at the end of the current term.

“In short, for generations of NBC News reporters, working alongside Pete has been a daily masterclass in journalism. But perhaps more importantly, it has been a masterclass in what it means to be a good colleague,” Oppenheim added.

“Pete’s decency, kindness, and generosity are unmatched. For those that know Pete well, it’s his warmth, humor, wit, and compassion that will be missed most.”

Williams will remain with NBC News through July before calling it a career. 

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News Television

Chris Licht: CNN Must Be Beacon of Journalism to Functional Democracy

“Now, the next chapter of CNN is one where we aspire to be a beacon for the kind of journalism essential to a functioning democracy,” Licht said

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CNN’s new president Chris Licht shed some light on the direction he plans to take the company at the Warner Bros. Discovery upfront. 

Licht spoke at the presentation alongside Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav, who expressed that CNN will be organized “to advocate for journalism first” and deliver for viewers “seeking more accurate information and less yelling and conflict.”

Furthermore, Licht proposed similar aspirations as he summarized his plan for the cable news channel to double down on what many might call sane news. 

“Now, the next chapter of CNN is one where we aspire to be a beacon for the kind of journalism essential to a functioning democracy,” Licht said, per Mediaite.

“In a time where extremes are dominating cable news, we will seek to go a different way — reflecting the real lives of our viewers and elevating the way America and the world views this medium.”

The new CNN president also vows to “challenge the traditional philosophy of cable news, delivering programming and commentary that questions the status quo, shatters group-think, holds our leaders on both sides of the aisle accountable to facts, and fights fearlessly to get to the truth.”

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