Last week’s morning program co-host Kaitlan Collins moderated a town hall featuring former President Donald Trump, which CNN’s CEO Chris Licht appears to have viewed favorably.
He announced in a memo to staff on Wednesday that he was giving Collins, a former reporter for the right-leaning Daily Caller, Chris Cuomo’s old 9 p.m. EDT time slot, which had been vacant for approximately one year.
“In her new program, officially launching later this summer, Kaitlan will showcase why she’s one of the top reporters and interviewers in the game,” Licht wrote in the memo, according to The New York Times. “She is a smart and gifted journalist who we’ve all seen hold lawmakers and newsmakers accountable. She pushes politicians off their talking points, gets real answers—and as everyone who’s worked with her knows—breaks a lot of news.”
Just announced at #WBDUpfront: @KaitlanCollins is the new anchor of CNN’s 9pm hour. In her new program, officially launching later this summer, Kaitlan will bring fresh reporting that adds new perspective to the biggest stories of the day. Join us in congratulating Kaitlan! pic.twitter.com/RRv8QaJE6c
— CNN Communications (@CNNPR) May 17, 2023
Licht stated in his memo that Collins will likely “expose uncovered angles” and ensure that viewers see all facets of a story.
She will abandon her current morning co-hosting duties with colleague Poppy Harlow, who will be joined by a rotation of guest co-hosts after the network fired former co-host Don Lemon last month and Fox News removed Tucker Carlson from air.
“The network’s executives are currently searching for candidates to serve as the show’s executive producer to work with the development team, according to the memo,” the Daily Caller reported.
Collins’ meteoric ascent at CNN comes as she moderated what many are calling a “disastrous” town hall with Trump in New Hampshire last Wednesday.
In a statement, a CNN spokesperson told Mediaite: “Tonight, Kaitlan Collins exemplified what it means to be a world-class journalist. She asked tough, fair, and revealing questions. And she followed up and fact-checked President Trump in real time to arm voters with crucial information about his positions as he enters the 2024 election as the Republican frontrunner. That is CNN’s role and responsibility: to get answers and hold the powerful to account.”
Many liberals criticized CNN for hosting a town hall with Donald Trump prior to the 2024 presidential election and spent the majority of the night ranting and complaining.
New York Democrat Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez flamed CNN, tweeting: “CNN should be ashamed of themselves. They have lost total control of this “town hall” to again be manipulated into platforming election disinformation, defenses of Jan 6th, and a public attack on a sexual abuse victim. The audience is cheering him on and laughing at the host. This falls squarely on CNN. Everyone here saw exactly what was going to happen. Instead they put a sexual abuse victim in harm’s way for views. This was a choice to platform lies about the election & Jan 6th w/ no plan but to have their moderator interrupted without consequence.”
The CEO of Warner Bros. Discovery, the company that owns CNN, defended the decision when he appeared on “Squawk Box” and spoke with Joe Kernan.
“Because I want to talk about CNN, and I want to talk about the cable news wars and what former President Trump is going to be on CNN?” host Joe Kernan asked David Zaslav.
More on this story via Conservative Brief:
“Yeah, he should be,” the CEO said. CONTINUE READING…