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Cumulus Media Dropping Sean Hannity And Rush Limbaugh

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Cumulus Media, the nation's second-largest owner and operator of AM and FM radio stations, will not be renewing the contracts of hyper-conservative pundits Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity. According to Politico, the decision comes after a breakdown of negotiations between Cumulus and Clear Channel "over the cost of the distribution rights," and supposedly has nothing to do with any comment made by either of the hosts. While this is not the first time that Cumulus and Clear Channel have had disagreements, Politico'c source, who was apparently close to the negotiations and who declined to be identified, told the news publication that "Cumulus is known to drive a hard bargain on costs, and Clear Channel is known to seek top dollar for big names...Clear Channel was unlikely to reduce the cost for distribution rights to a level that would satisfy Cumulus." As of this morning, neither company has issued a comment.

Sean hannityAccording to industry insiders, however, Cumulus has already started reaching out to other conservative personalities to potentially fill these upcoming vacancies. Others predict that Cumulus will likely use one of their existing talents to fill such slots, such as Mike Huckabee, Mark Levin, or Michael Savage, Meanwhile, Hannity and Limbaugh will likely migrate over to Premiere. It is not yet clear if either host will suffer from decreased syndication as a result. 

Limbaugh and Cumulus were already at odds earlier this year, when Cumulus CEO Lew Dickey blamed Limbaugh's tasteless comments about Sandra Fluke for their "$2.4 million first-quarter decline in revenue related to talk programming." Neither host has issued any sort of comment about their negotiations with Cumulus since then. 

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Comments

  1. This is pure speculation, but I wonder if the extreme conservatism of Hannity and Limbaugh is beginning to wear thin with their audience.

    Posted by: Voet | Jul 29, 2013 9:19:20 AM


  2. Too bad they can't drop them on their heads.

    Posted by: Jack M | Jul 29, 2013 9:29:43 AM


  3. I guess even right wing radio is tired of these two wild and crazy guys!!!

    Posted by: SouthJerseySteve | Jul 29, 2013 9:37:49 AM


  4. This is just good business. The cost has simply begun to outweigh the income potential of these two.

    Sometimes a media persoinality begins to remind you of that loud, crass opininated uncle everone avoids at family functions.

    Posted by: Hey Darlin' | Jul 29, 2013 9:41:18 AM


  5. Messrs. Windbag and Vanity haven't had anything worthwhile to add to the public discourse in decades. Talk radio? -- so 20th century, why does anyone suffer these fools with their incessant triteness and phony outrage? Only an idiot would want to listen to them.

    Posted by: Onnyjay | Jul 29, 2013 9:54:25 AM


  6. i'm not going to hold my breath. not only could things change for a number of reasons, but both Clear Radio & Cumulus have been known to start up talks again - frequently! tho, it still would be nice...

    Posted by: mike/ | Jul 29, 2013 9:55:10 AM


  7. Good for them.

    Posted by: Tom | Jul 29, 2013 9:56:35 AM


  8. It's capitalism and the free market come to bite both in the ass.

    It's not about ratings...but declining ad revenue and declining profits because their contracts are so expen$ive. That's all...just about the bottom line.

    Posted by: QJ201 | Jul 29, 2013 10:17:29 AM


  9. The GOP's bookends.

    Posted by: newz4i | Jul 29, 2013 10:37:55 AM


  10. It would be nice if Cumulus was doing it for the right reasons, not just because of the money, though the money is an issue because of the drop in advertising due to outrage at these inexcusable semi-human gasbags. So win-win.

    Posted by: Lifesart | Jul 29, 2013 11:38:04 AM


  11. Cue Rush blaming this on a "vast left-wing conspiracy" in 5...4...3...

    Posted by: FuryOfFirestorm | Jul 29, 2013 12:13:09 PM


  12. That is some scary, scary Photoshopping on the Hannity headshot.

    Pity they can't airbrush out demogoguery.

    Posted by: tim b | Jul 29, 2013 12:54:48 PM


  13. If replaced by Levin and Savage (who can't stand each other), it would essentially mean more of the same. The problem is that their demographics are skewing so old now (55+) that advertisers just aren't that excited. Neither company is too interested in their politics per se.

    Posted by: anon | Jul 29, 2013 5:14:33 PM


  14. Good day for the industry. Bad day for bigots. I hope their heads explode over the news.

    Posted by: millerbeach | Jul 30, 2013 2:02:43 AM


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