President Donald Trump ripped the Drudge Report on Tuesday, which for months has posted negative stories about the president and pumped up his opponent, Joe Biden.
The president’s comments came in response to a Twitter post from Dan Bongino, a conservative radio host who appears often on Fox News. “Dump Drudge, it’s a non-stop hysteria machine. Use BonginoReport.com for your news, and the leave the hysteria for the panic merchants,” Bongino wrote.
Trump retweeted the post and added: “Congratulations Dan. You, Breitbart and others have decimated the business at Drudge. It’s gone the way of the @NBA, ratings down 70%. People want the TRUTH! Drudge Report sold out, suffered a massive ‘nervous breakdown.’ Happening @FoxNews also???”
Congratulations Dan. You, Breitbart and others have decimated the business at Drudge. It’s gone the way of the @NBA, ratings down 70%. People want the TRUTH! Drudge Report sold out, suffered a massive “nervous breakdown”. Happening @FoxNews also??? https://t.co/Zr07XdHtNx
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 13, 2020
Matt Drudge has seemingly been cheering for Trump’s political demise, though he supported him in 2016. “BIDEN ‘91% CHANCE’ OF WINNING,” says one of his main headlines on Tuesday. No one quite knows why Drudge, who was once a regular visitor to the Trump White House, had his change of heart. Some suggest he sold the site, while others say he is unhappy with Trump’s inability to keep his campaign promises.
Since Drudge morphed his site into anti-Trump, his number of page views has dropped. “Current traffic numbers for last month aren’t available yet, but the president is correct about Drudge Report’s declining numbers,” TheWrap wrote on Tuesday. “According to Comscore data, the Drudge Report had 1.488 million unique visitors in July 2020 -— the most recent month for which data is available. That’s down 38.0% from July 2019, when the site boasted 2.399 million unique visitors.”
Trump criticized Drudge in April, retweeting an attack from a conservative blogger who said Drudge’s coverage of COVID-19 was misleading and sensationalistic. “I gave up on Drudge (a really nice guy) long ago, as have many others,” Trump wrote. “People are dropping like flies!”
The famously reclusive Drudge, a germophobe who boasts that he hasn’t been photographed in years, fired back. “The past 30 days has been the most eyeballs in Drudge Report’s 26 year-history,” Drudge said in an email to CNN. “Heartbreaking that it has been under such tragic circumstances.”
In September, Trump again slammed the site, saying it “is no longer ‘hot.’”
“Such an honor! Drudge is down 40% plus since he became Fake News. Most importantly, he’s bleeding profusely, and is no longer ‘hot.’ But others are! Lost ALL Trumpers,” he wrote on Twitter.
Such an honor! Drudge is down 40% plus since he became Fake News. Most importantly, he’s bleeding profusely, and is no longer “hot”. But others are! Lost ALL Trumpers. https://t.co/LdsYWKmgdL
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 13, 2020
Also last month, Trump ripped Drudge after the website led with a report that Trump had been hospitalized with a series of “mini-strokes.”
“Drudge didn’t support me in 2016, and I hear he doesn’t support me now. Maybe that’s why he is doing poorly. His Fake News report on Mini-Strokes is incorrect. Possibly thinking about himself, or the other party’s ‘candidate,'” Trump wrote on Sept. 1.
Other conservatives have also taken aim at the once-conservative site. Fox News’ Tucker Carlson said in July that Drudge is “now firmly a man of the progressive left.”
*Joseph Curl ran the Drudge Report from 2010 to 2014 and covered the White House for a dozen years. He can be reached at email@example.com and on Twitter at @JosephCurl.