OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
Fox News contributor and famous liberal Geraldo Rivera was blasted again on social media for a post criticizing a segment of former President Donald Trump’s town hall Wednesday hosted by CNN.
The event was moderated by morning show co-host Kaitlin Collins, a rising star at the network. Rivera’s criticism of Trump was linked to a remark he made about Collins at one point during the event as she challenged him on a point he was trying to make.
“You’re a nasty person,” Trump said, which elicited laughter and cheers from the largely supportive New Hampshire audience.
Trump SLAMS CNN host to her face:
"You're a nasty person."pic.twitter.com/JGYM89KRjP
— Patriot Alerts (@alerts___) May 11, 2023
Rivera tweeted in response: “I’ve liked President Trump over the decades through thick and thin, even after I pledged never again to support him after January 6th. But when he called Kaitlan Collins ‘nasty’ I felt like spitting. It was so unmanly,” he tweeted.
I’ve liked President Trump over the decades through thick and thin, even after I pledged never again to support him after January 6th.
But when he called Kaitlan Collins “nasty”
I felt like spitting. It was so unmanly.
— Geraldo Rivera (@GeraldoRivera) May 12, 2023
Several Twitter users chimed in to respond to Rivera’s remark.
This is sickening. Fox News should have fired Geraldo, NOT Tucker Carlson.
— Patriot Alerts (@alerts___) May 13, 2023
She was immature, disrespectful and rude. A nasty person is an understatement.
— AppPatriotgirl 🇺🇸 (@jsmith4966) May 13, 2023
He was telling the truth..you just can’t stand the fact that the GOAT tells it like it is..
— ★·.·★Lynn★·.·★ (@2MeltonL) May 12, 2023
You are a nasty man.
— Spitfire (@DogRightGirl) May 12, 2023
She was being nasty!!! We ditched you a long time ago. If you consider how you’ve acted towards Trump you “liking him” then who needs enemies!
— 🇺🇸Proud American 🇺🇸 (@American_81) May 12, 2023
How many times did he happened in the White House press pool… nothing new here.
— John Linton🇺🇸 (@realjohnlinton) May 13, 2023
Meanwhile, following the town hall, CNN CEO Chris Licht prepared to announce that Collins, 31, will take over the network’s 9 PM ET primetime slot, which Chris Cuomo previously occupied before he was fired.
“CNN, which has endured some of the worst ratings in its history under Zaz’s hand-picked C.E.O., Chris Licht, is now poised for a brief taste of the same power and influence that it enjoyed in the old days. And it will achieve that massive audience, of course, via the very same mechanism that fueled the Zucker years: Donald Trump,” Puck News reported.
News of Collins’ new assignment came after many criticized the Trump event as “disastrous.”
In a statement, a CNN spokesperson pushed back, telling Mediaite: “Tonight, Kaitlan Collins exemplified what it means to be a world-class journalist. She asked tough, fair, and revealing questions. And she followed up and fact-checked President Trump in real time to arm voters with crucial information about his positions as he enters the 2024 election as the Republican frontrunner. That is CNN’s role and responsibility: to get answers and hold the powerful to account.”
Still, many left-wing critics sounded off on the network for hosting Trump as the 2024 election cycle begins in earnest.
New York Democrat Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez flamed CNN, tweeting: “CNN should be ashamed of themselves. They have lost total control of this “town hall” to again be manipulated into platforming election disinformation, defenses of Jan 6th, and a public attack on a sexual abuse victim. The audience is cheering him on and laughing at the host. This falls squarely on CNN. Everyone here saw exactly what was going to happen. Instead they put a sexual abuse victim in harm’s way for views. This was a choice to platform lies about the election & Jan 6th w/ no plan but to have their moderator interrupted without consequence.”
Still, the event was a ratings smash for CNN, which has been a distant third for years behind Fox News and left-wing rival MSNBC.
According to The Hill, the town hall drew in more than 3 million viewers, which was more than three times the normal viewership for the prime-time slot.
Trump praised CNN for inviting him on his Truth Social platform, writing: “People are criticizing CNN for giving me a Forum to tell the TRUTH. I believe it was a very smart thing that they did, with Sky High Ratings that they haven’t seen in a very long time. It was by far the biggest Show of the night, the week, and the month!”
“The Radical Left screamed, ‘Take it down, take it down,’ during the Show, because they saw that I was making so many important points on the Border, Energy Independence, the Afghanistan Catastrophe, Inflation, the Economy, Russia/Ukraine, and so much more. Many minds were changed on Wednesday night by listening to Common Sense, and sheer ‘Brilliance,’” Trump noted in a follow-up post.