CBS President Les Moonves Celebrates Donald Trump's Ratings - It's just Business

As they say in Texas, "Money talks and bullshit walks," but Donald Trump has taken his reality show on the road as a campaign for POTUS and, in one respect, he has turned that tried and true axiom on its head.  In Q4 2015 the Donald spent $10.8 million of his own money and raised $27.3 million selling t-shirts and baseball caps.  That's $38 million compared to:

Hillary Clinton - $188 million

Ted Cruz - $104 million

Bernie Sanders - $98 million

Marco Rubio - $84.6 million

Ben Carson - $68 million

While both Sanders and Clinton lead in national polls against Trump (Sanders leads by an average 9% and HRC beats him by 3%) Trump holds a commanding double digit lead in most polls of Republican candidates.  How is this possible?

Cable television news coverage of Trump's campaign for the three months in Q3 2015 might explain that.  Of the top contenders Trump garnered over 40% of the free air time.  It's gotten worse as the debates have reduced the field.  Ben Carson just announced he's dropping out.

Now Les Moonves, President of CBS, openly admits that the Donald boosts ratings when it comes to "news" coverage of the campaign, hence his dominance of "free airtime" on CBS News.  If Trump manages to get the GOP nomination, this "free airtime" under the guise of television "news" coverage will likely become a major factor in the run up to the election in  November.  Any time Trump needs a boost in the polls all he will need to do is announce a "news" conference to get wall to wall "news" coverage. 

 "It may not be good for America, but it's damn good for CBS," Les said when he called the campaign for president a "circus" full of "bomb throwing," and added that he hopes it continues.  "Most of the ads are not about issues. They're sort of like the debates," he said, "Man, who would have expected the ride we're all having right now? ... The money's rolling in and this is fun.  I've never seen anything like this, and this going to be a very good year for us. Sorry. It's a terrible thing to say. But, bring it on, Donald. Keep going,"

There is no word yet as to when the Trump campaign will begin to start "pay to play" fund raising by charging media for credentials to cover the campaign and/or require reporters to buy and wear  "Make America Great Again" baseball caps.

... or if any of this insanity would be a violation of Federal Election Commission regulations.  As Moonves points out it ain't anything personal, it's just about the Benjamins.

Views: 613

Comment by marilyn sands on March 2, 2016 at 12:59pm

You're right - it began with "News is Entertainment" & got worse with Trump's Stage-Time on every outlet that you can see, hear, click or swipe.  If he isn't stopped; it will be "Trump, The World... I want to get off"!  R&L

Comment by Zanelle on March 2, 2016 at 12:59pm

Trump is a deal maker.  He brags about all the international deals he has made and people love it.   He is outrageous and has lit a fire under people for MONEY.  

 Bernie has lit a fire too and yet he is humble.  Nice guys finish last.   America has come to this.  Free airtime for the worst. 

Comment by JMac1949 Today on March 2, 2016 at 1:03pm

Marilyn and Z, thanks for reading and commenting.  Funny that Bernie out polls Trump by nine points, while HRC can barely squeak by with 3%.  Hmmmm, maybe our problem isn't the Tea Party Republicans.

Comment by Jonathan Wolfman on March 2, 2016 at 1:08pm


Comment by Alan Milner on March 2, 2016 at 1:50pm

NO, Pogo had it  right.  We have met the enemy and he is us, or words to that effect.  We talk to each other.  They talk to each other, but we don't talk to them and they don't talk to we end up living in our separate fall out shelters each convinced that we know what's going on while neither they nor us really have a grasp on the situation. Here in Florida they are talking about drilling for oil shale UNDER the two aquifers that service the entire southeastern United States and no one marches, no one sits in, no one does a thing. Donald Trump is following Adolph Hitler's playbook. I am not sure he ever read Mein Kampf but I am guessing that he has.  When it comes to winning friends and influencing people, Hitler was the all-time greatest.  Now we have our very own demagogue.  We can all see what's coming down but like deer in the headlines we are frozen in place. Friends of mine - friends from my movement days - are telling me not to worry that the younger generation will save us, if they remember to vote, but I'm not so sure. I think that most young people know the game is rigged so they don't bother worry about it.  When Miley Cyrus - Miley Cyrus - talks about leaving the country if Trump's elected, its obvious that we have gone down a rabble hole into a strange new universe where the laws of common sense no longer rule.


Comment by koshersalaami on March 2, 2016 at 2:02pm
Les is talking even straighter than Donald
Comment by koshersalaami on March 2, 2016 at 2:06pm
Comment by JMac1949 Today on March 2, 2016 at 2:25pm

Kosh, Out-frigging-standing, I'm putting it up!!

Comment by JMac1949 Today on March 2, 2016 at 2:29pm

Jon and Alan,  Thanks for commenting... hard to imagine American popular culture without Miley Cyrus to pick on.

Comment by koshersalaami on March 2, 2016 at 2:33pm
Yeah, it's great


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