But the word in conservative circles is that Mercer and his right-wing activist-daughter Rebekah, a close Bannon confidant, are wary of joining forces with the Trump-friendly Sinclair Broadcast Group, the owner of cable outlet WGN and what will total more than 230 local television stations after government regulators approve its planned $3.9 billion acquisition of Tribune Media.
“That they were looking at Sinclair is totally legit, but apparently at some point the Mercers had concluded that the Sinclair people were too cheap to actually effectively go after Fox,” said a well-connected source in right-wing media.
“Steve’s not a TV person. He doesn’t like TV; he loves radio,” said Chris Ruddy, a pal of the president’s and the chief executive of right-leaning Newsmax, whose cable channel reaches around 35 million households. (Bannon is the former and likely future host of Breitbart News Daily on SiriusXM Radio.) “He may entertain notions of building a TV channel, but that’s very challenging to do from scratch,” Ruddy added. “God bless him if he could do that with any speed.”