The CEO of Newsmax, whose branding includes the input of coronavirus conspiracy spreaders Diamond & Silk and former White House press secretary Sean Spicer, claims the company isn't aiming to become "Trump TV."
Christopher Ruddy's comments arrive following a report from the Wall Street Journal stating "Trump allies"—namely, the RNC-linked Hicks Equity Partners—had recently engaged in talks centered on the possible acquisition of (and investment in) the quite obviously Trump-aligned Newsmax channel.
As the WSJ report noted, and as has been discussed for some time now, supporters of Trump in positions to do so are believed to have been angling for something of this nature for years. The aim, it appears, is to put forth a competitor against Fox News and its similarly Trump-devoted demographic.
Ruddy, described in a 2017 Politico piece as a Mar-a-Lago club member and "longtime friend" to the failed steak salesman, claimed in an interview with Variety's Brian Steinberg on Sunday that the Newsmax company is not "actively" in the process of trying to be sold.
"Newsmax would never become 'Trump TV,'" Ruddy said. "We have always seen ourselves as an independent news agency, and we want to continue with that mission." Ruddy, however, is "open" to the idea of welcoming Trump to Newsmax for a weekly show of some sort. Per Ruddy, the larger goal is to "overtake" Fox News within the next 12 months. Fox News, however, still has ratings on their side. Back in January, Nielsen reported that Fox News had marked 18 years as the most-watched network.
Last week, Axios came through with a report alleging that Trump has been telling those close to him that he's aiming to launch a digital media company to take on Fox News. While it has indeed been long-theorized Trump could take this route, the latest word notes that alleged plans have since shifted to focus on a possible online-based outlet due to lower overhead and a swifter launch.