First it was Erin Burnett, now it might be Elisabeth Hasselbeck.
The New York Post’s Page Six reports today that ABC’s The View co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck is being wooed by CNN president Jeff Zucker to become the network’s new morning show co-host, a spot that Erin Burnett reportedly turned down unless she received a big raise to leave her primetime slot.
Rumors have been swirling for weeks that Hasselbeck is being pushed out by ABC, with the departure of Joy Behar and a dip in the ratings that has the network looking to possibly revamp the show and give it a fresher look. Barbara Walters has denied the rumors of Hasslebeck’s departure, but denials are just that—denials.
Hasselbeck, who has spent years as the lone conservative voice on The View, may be looking for a change and having only one other co-host—Chris Cuomo, for example, would give her a chance for far more airtime to voice her views and be heard. Plus, she has also written a couple of books on gluten-free diets, which shows her softer side. That is apparently something Zucker is apparently looking for in a co-host.
Zucker, who reshaped the Today show and turned it into a ratings juggernaut, is looking to do the same thing at CNN. But he is doing it in a very different landscape, which will make it much harder for the former wunderkind to replicate his previous success at NBC.
If Hasselbeck does leave, she will join former ABC employees John Berman, Chris Cuomo and Jake Tapper who have already jumped ship, in the hopes that Zucker can revive CNN and give their careers a big boost in the process.