Matt Drudge posted a rare personal tweet on Thursday afternoon predicting that CNN President Jeff Zucker is "out either way" regardless of whether AT&T's acquisition of Time Warner is approved, citing poor prime-time ratings and Zucker's alleged "personal and ridiculous" feud with President TrumpDonald TrumpGraham says he hopes that Trump runs again Trump says Stacey Abrams 'might be better than existing governor' Kemp Executive privilege fight poses hurdles for Trump MORE.
"Jeff Zucker out either way at CNN, primetime ratings abysmal," the Drudge Report founder tweeted to his 545,000 followers. "Feud with President Trump too personal and ridiculous."
CNN fired back at Drudge via its own CNN Communications account, citing strong ratings when compared to the network's past performance.
CNN is pacing to have its 2nd highest year in primetime since 2008 - behind only 2016 elex year. Those are the facts.— CNN Communications (@CNNPR) November 9, 2017
In the cable news race in prime time, CNN is frequently third to MSNBC and Fox News in both total viewers and the key 25–54 demographic that advertisers covet most.
Trump regularly calls CNN "fake news" over its coverage, including tweeting a video of him tackling a man with the CNN logo superimposed on his face.
Drudge's tweet comes amid conflicting reports over whether the Justice Department has demanded AT&T divest itself of CNN before proceeding with the Time Warner deal.
Justice Department sources told The Hill and other outlets on Wednesday that AT&T had offered to sell CNN from the combined company to get the merger approved by regulators, claims AT&T officials categorically deny.