In the latest shake-up for CNN, one of its primetime hosts, Alisyn Camerota, is off the network because of a scandal involving her and former CNN CEO Jeff Zucker. Camerota, who had hosted the network’s 10 pm to midnight show, will be replaced in the 10 pm to 11 pm slot by CNN senior political correspondent Abby Phillip. Phillip previously hosted CNN’s Inside Politics Sunday. CNN chief legal analyst Laura Coates will reportedly anchor CNN’s 11 pm hour.
CNN announced Camerota’s firing after she was caught holding hands with Jeff Zucker while leaving a party in the Hamptons hosted by former CNN anchor Don Lemon, who was fired over his outbursts and continuing controversies.
Describing the incident, a CNN insider said, “It was most likely done as a slap in the face for Allison Why? Nobody knows. The entire thing is just so strange with them all being there with Don. It was a CNN dejected soirée with Alisyn.” Continuing, the insider added, “Alisyn also knows how the company she works for feels about Jeff and his behavior that led to his exit, but she had disregard for this.”
That insider did add that the incident likely did not have romantic overtones, saying, “She is happily married, as far as she says, and no one thinks that she would jeopardize her job or ruin her marriage for Jeff.” Regardless, the insider said, “Alisyn should know better, especially after talking so much s— about Fox over coworkers’ inappropriate behavior there.”
CNN Worldwide’s leadership team, Amy Entelis, David Leavy, Virginia Moseley and Eric Sherling, spoke about the prime-time shakeup in a statement released by CNN, saying, “One of CNN’s key differentiators is our deep roster of experienced journalists, reporters and storytellers. Many joined CNN early in their careers and have grown with the network throughout the years. They are extraordinarily talented and share the same CNN sensibility: versatility, determination and an inquisitive and empathetic approach to reporting the news. By expanding the range and depth of our programming lineup across multiple dayparts, we are strengthening our reporting excellence throughout the schedule, elevating our ability to tell great stories across platforms, and doubling down on CNN’s position as the most trusted name in news.”
CNN tried to put a positive spin on things in the statement, saying, “The scope of today’s programming announcement highlights some of CNN’s key advantages including a diverse group of world-class journalists powering an unparalleled domestic and international newsgathering operation. From the top global stories to U.S. news covering politics, business, health, climate, justice, and more, CNN delivers unmatched on-the-ground reporting with top expertise and analysis for a distinctive value proposition.”
Continuing, the statement went on to describe the two new shows. First, it described Phillip’s show, saying, “Abby Phillip: Abby will anchor a new primetime show out of New York, taking a smart and sharp approach to the day’s driving stories, drawing on her reporting background to present and contextualize the news across a wide range of subject matters.”
Then, describing Coates’ show, it said, “Laura Coates: Laura, a New York Times Bestselling author, Chief Legal Analyst and SiriusXM Host, will anchor a new primetime show for CNN out of Washington, showcasing legal, social, political and cultural stories, leveraging her significant experience as a prosecutor and relentless pursuit of the facts to anchor lively conversations with newsmakers, thought leaders and personalities across the spectrum.“
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