MSNBC has seen a steady decline in ratings, finding itself often falling behind CNN, which has been riddled with its own problems.
Several suggestions have been batted around as to what exactly is causing MSNBC's instability: It's an election off-year. It's too much opinion without any actual news. It's Al Sharpton.
David Shuster, a liberal commentator who was suspended from the network in 2010 after reportedly auditioning for a show on CNN, has his own theory.
From the National Journal:
"When you're too predictably a mouthpiece for the administration and you cast your lot with the president's performance, there's a risk," said David Shuster, who left the network for Current TV when his contract expired in 2011. He pointed to Fox's higher production values as one of the reasons for the conservative network's ongoing ratings dominance lead and the high-brow nature of MSNBC's prime time lineup as one of the reasons for its most recent decline.