Amid talk that Joy Reid is out at MSNBC, former VP Harris spox, Jesse Watters named in big cable news changes

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Some big changes are coming to cable news.

On MSNBC, Symone Sanders is launching a weekend show, and on Fox News, Jesse Watters has been named the permanent host of the 7. p.m. slot that has featured a rotating group of opinion hosts during an extensive on-air audition period.

Democrat strategist Sanders, who recently abandoned the sinking ship known as the office of Vice President Kamala Harris, is set to anchor a Washington, D.C.-based show with a name and time slot to be determined on Saturdays and Sundays commencing in the spring of 2022.

In the meantime, Sanders, a senior advisor on the Joe Biden 2020 campaign, will handle fill-in anchor duties on MSNBC as well as host a show on NBC’s Peacock network.

Sanders was namesake Bernie Sanders’ press secretary in the 2016 presidential campaign and later worked at CNN as a political commentator, so she has achieved the requisite corporate media-desired credentials.

“The hiring of Ms. Sanders is one of the first big programming moves by MSNBC’s president, Rashida Jones, who took charge of the channel in February, after the departure of its longtime head, Phil Griffin,” the New York Times explained. “Ms. Jones must reshape the network lineup after the recent exit of the anchor Brian Williams and the decision by Rachel Maddow, the network’s biggest draw, to dial back her on-air presence later this year.”

“Sanders will bring her expertise, spirited rhetoric and sharp political insight to MSNBC’s multi-platform channels. Her program will explore issues at the intersection of politics, culture and race and break down how decisions made in Washington impact electorates, industries, and communities across the country. She will also interview law and policy makers, top government officials, scholars, and thought leaders,” NBC explained in a statement.

Sanders told the Times that she plans “to bring my whole self to this show…Yes, I do politics, but I’m also a consumer of pop culture. I watch the news, I check Twitter, but I’m also into ‘Real Housewives.’ I’m interested in reaching what I call the nonpolitical group chats, the discussions that are penetrating outside of Washington.”

As a side note, the revolving door between politics and media is almost as commonplace as between the regulators and those in the regulated industries.

Over on Fox News, “Jesse Watters Primetime” begins on January 24. The network also plans to develop a new show to replace “Watters’ World” that airs on Saturday evening which he will be relinquishing.

Watters has double-duty in his immediate future because will continue as a co-host on “The Five,” which is one of the highest-rated shows on the network that already dominates the cable news space.

The MAGA-trending Watters, who worked his way up from a production assistant job, has come into his own on “The Five,” with a charismatic presentation style as well as seemingly being very prepared for each topic, qualities that don’t always go together. His intonation style is very reminiscent of his ex-boss Bill O’Reilly for whom he used to film those quirky man/woman on the street interviews.

In his expanded role, Watters hopefully won’t interrupt his interview guests as much as his former mentor did.

“Jesse’s versatility and hosting acumen has grown exponentially over the last five years, and he has developed a deep connection to the audience through two hit shows The Five and Watters’ World. We look forward to watching him expand his connection even further through this new solo weeknight hour,” Fox News Media CEO Suzanne Scott asserted in a statement.

In the meantime, rumors have emerged that “The ReidOut” host could soon be out at MSNBC as part of a lineup reshuffling.

Joy Reid, the conspiracy theorist and Harvard University graduate whom Tucker Carlson has nicknamed “the race lady” and Jason Whitlock has renamed Racial Maddow, could lose her platform by the spring, according to ex-Mediaite managing editor Jon Nicosia.

Given the identity politics agenda that typically prevails at media outlets like MSNBC, Outkick media columnist Bobby Burack, however, expressed doubt that the channel is actually willing to take the PR hit if it, indeed, parted ways with Reid.

There’s little question that some MSNBC producers and executives are fed up with Reid. She’s toxic and treats those around her poorly. She also regularly embarrasses the network. Even MSNBC has some shame…Reid’s show, called ReidIn or something, loses badly to Fox News and CNN head-to-head in the 25-54 demographic. She’s not a ratings hit, and she has a lot of baggage, an often calamitous combination for would-be network hosts…MSNBC is not a network willing to endure the publicity storm that would result from accusations of racism. MSNBC knows that firing a black woman would be the story, no matter how justified the cause or how racially-diverse the person it hired as a replacement…



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