Politics & Policy

CNN Won’t Renew Analyst’s Contract after Conservative Site Hires Her

A television displays a CNN program in a window in Boston, Mass. (Brian Snyder/Reuters)

CNN will not renew the contract of one of their conservative analysts, Eliana Johnson, after she was hired to run the Washington Free Beacon, a conservative news site.

Johnson, a top White House reporter for Politico and former National Review reporter, has appeared on air for CNN since November 2017. The network said her contract, which expires in November, will not be renewed because she will no longer be a White House reporter.

Currently, Johnson frequently discusses news on CNN other than President Trump’s White House.

“CNN has a right to tap or drop contributors at any point,” Johnson said. “None of us is entitled to a contract renewal.”

“I want to build on the excellent work the Beacon has done and continue to train serious reporters who have a conservative outlook and an irreverent sensibility,” she said of her new gig. “The focus has been and will continue to be on scoops and original reporting.”

Johnson, who has broken major White House scoops in recent years, will take over the Beacon’s 24-strong staff from the site’s founding editor, Matthew Continetti.

While CNN has continued to have certain conservative commentators appear regularly on air, such as National Review‘s own editor Rich Lowry, it has dropped or sidelined several others.

Former Georgia congressman Jack Kingston and Andre Bauer, a former South Carolina lieutenant governor, who are both right-leaning, did not have their contracts renewed. Meanwhile, neither Trump campaign surrogate Steve Cortes nor Republican analyst Ben Ferguson has been seen on the network in months.

Several Democrats have also been cut from CNN’s payroll, which the network called “the natural churn of contributors.”

“You can’t run a news channel and you can’t do a show if you don’t talk to all sides,” CNN president Jeff Zucker said in April.

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