(AZCENTRAL) — As a white, male, middle-aged conservative talk radio host from Virginia, John Fredericks is something close to the Platonic ideal of a Fox News fan.

And until last year, he was one. But then Fox’s treatment of the Republican primary race — the presentation of Karl Rove as a political analyst despite his having “thrown in for Romney” and Sean Hannity’s clear ties to the Republican establishment — began to grate on him. So he changed the channel.

“I’ve gone from all Fox to no Fox, and replaced it with CNN, which I think right now is giving me a much fairer analysis of what’s going on,” he said. “I feel they’ve lost that independent conservative mantra that had drove people like me to them. I used to feel that I got it straight, and I got an independent conservative view. Now, what I get is some wholly owned subsidiary of the RNC (Republican National Committee).”

Across the Conservative Political Action Conference this year, there were similar grumbles among conservative activists that the cable channel was no longer speaking for them as it once did.

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