I think it’s been well established by now that Fox News is unabashedly right wing, and now it’s obvious that MSNBC is more than willing to become a purely left wing answer to them.
Case in point…popular partisan talker Ed Schultz is being considered for a talk show on the net.
The Observer has learned that MSNBC president Phil Griffin is in discussions with syndicated talk radio host Ed Schultz about possibly joining the network on a full-time basis. It is unclear what exactly the job would entail should Mr. Schultz and MSNBC come to an agreement.
On March 10, Mr. Schultz, who bills himself as the “most listened-to progressive radio talk show host in America,” guest-hosted on MSNBCâ€™s 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. As The Observer reported at the time, the appearance touched off a wave of rumors among MSNBC staffers that Mr. Schultz was being groomed to join the network as an anchor.
Eight days later, on Wednesday, March 18, Mr. Schultz was back in the anchor chair, again, filling in for David Shuster on the 6 p.m. show.
One network source told The Observer that an offer has already been extended to Mr. Schultz. A network spokesperson denied that any offer has been made.
As far as liberal talkers go, Schultz is a pretty reasonable guy and it’s not a surprising move given the trend away from hard reporting and towards political punditry on the cable nets. After all, filling up 24 hours worth of news is impossible to do these days, so might as well have somebody talking about their opinions, right? At least that’s the argument. I don’t buy it, but that’s the logic.
However, does MSNBC really want to be the analog to Fox News? I mean, Olbermann is RIDICULOUS and Maddow isn’t much better, but they have popular shows and they’re not going anywhere. So why load up the net with strictly liberal talkers? Why not start hiring guys like conservative talker Michael Smerconish? Why become almost fully left wing (with the notable exception being Joe Scarborough)?
All I have to say is CNN must be smiling about all this right now. Because they’re clearly now well positioned in the middle and if I were them I just let Fox and MSNBC fight it out and stay above the fray.