Al Sharpton is known for his political work and media appearances, but according to the latest reports, the Rev could be up for a regular television gig.
According to Media Bistro’s TVNewser:
TVNewser hears (Ceynk) Uygur may be moved out of the 6pm hour, possibly to be replaced by Al Sharpton. When the host changes happened earlier this year, the 6pm hour was simply known as “MSNBC Live,” a telling sign that MSNBC was trying out Uygur.
Sharpton has hosted the 6pm show for the last two weeks. This past week, the hour was second, to Fox News, in A25-54 viewers Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
From MSNBC’s point of view, Sharpton has show promise as an on air host and could be a magnet go-to slot as election coverage heats up. In his three weeks subbing in for Uygur, Sharpton has done well with older viewers. And even in the 10 p.m. slot, which Sharpton filled last month for MSNBC, he posted above average numbers. Still, Sharpton’s people are denying “formal discussions” with the network about the job.
If MSNBC does indeed rope in Sharpton, he would be one of only three anchors of color on cable networks the entire day. In the company of anchors Tamron Hall and Richard Lui, Sharpton would become the only host on during the after-work primetime hours.
Earlier this month, the NAACP blasted CNN and other cable networks for the lack of diversity in their lineups. In a statement, NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous said:
“The NAACP is deeply concerned with the lack of African American journalists in prime time news, both on cable and national network news shows….We have come to expect this from the likes of Fox News, but not other networks. While we understand that news is now a 24-hour cycle, most Americans get their news from the morning and evening prime time broadcasts. We recognize and appreciate that MSNBC often has guest hosts like the Reverend Al Sharpton, and CNN, CBS and NBC have weekend anchors like TJ Holmes, Don Lemon, Russ Mitchell and Lester Holt. Nonetheless, we encourage all networks to acknowledge the talent that exists and to increase the diversity among their prime time anchors and hosts.”
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