‘We need insurgent media:’ Chris Cuomo to join NewsNation


(NewsNation) — Former CNN anchor Chris Cuomo took swipes at America’s divided “binary” media and pledged to “try very hard to be fair” on his new prime-time talk show on NewsNation that will premiere in the fall. 

The announcement of the new show came during Cuomo’s interview with NewsNation’s Dan Abrams, his first media interview since being ousted from CNN in December. He said he saw a need for more down-the-middle political coverage during his break from national TV. 

“We need this right now because this binary system is killing us. And the media is trapped in it very often. You can’t be criticizing the game that you are a part of,” he said. 

Cuomo’s brother, former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, was accused last year by multiple women of sexual assault. The anchor was fired from his role at CNN after text messages released by the New York attorney general last year showed he had communicated with his brother’s advisers and relayed what he heard from sources regarding their coverage of the former governor.

In the months since being fired, Chris Cuomo launched “The Chris Cuomo Project,” a podcast intended to present his “signature take on today’s pressing current events — and explores how these stories are being covered by all sides of the media.”

After his ouster from CNN, he said he couldn’t go back to the major TV networks, “to what people see as the big game.” 

“I don’t think I can make a difference there. I think we need insurgent media. I think we need outlets that aren’t fringe and just trying to fill their pockets,” he said. “I’m going to go where the news is, and I’m going to try very hard to be fair.” 

Some of the topics he said he intends to cover on his new show include ranked choice voting, multi-party systems and pushing purple states, where Republicans and Democrats are competitive, to apportion their electors. He said he believes citizens “deserve to have people who present regular and reasonable opportunities” in the media. 

“My schtick is having no schtick,” he said. “I love confrontation. I love friction. And I think that I can be helpful in those moments because I’m not here to hurt anybody. I’m not here to take anybody down.” 

In the early months of the pandemic, Cuomo interviewed his brother, then-Gov. Andrew Cuomo, on his show multiple times. He told Abrams that he felt he was subjected to a “purity test” by the rest of the media during an “emergency.” 

“Everything I know about the situation tells me that of course there’s a conflict of interest but people got that,” he said. “Nobody thought I was interviewing my brother the way I was interviewing other people. That wasn’t the point or purpose of those things.”  

When asked if he was going to be more transparent on his new show, he replied: “I’d like to say yes, because it’s a good sell. But I’ve always been that way. I really don’t fake the funk.”

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