Greta Van Susteren is out of a job again.
MSNBC dismissed the Washington, D.C.-based host of For the Record this afternoon, and Van Susteren acknowledged that she was no longer with the network in a tweet at 3:59 p.m. that said succinctly “I am out at MSNBC.”
Van Susteren launched the 6 p.m. Eastern Monday through Friday show on January 9, which means that she lasted on the liberal network less than six months.
“The anchor, whose show struggled to gain traction even as the rest of her colleagues were buoyed by anti-Trump hysteria, has parted ways with the network,” Variety asserted.
A lawyer who gained television prominence during the O.J. Simpson trial of the 1990s on CNN, Van Susteren hosted On the Record at 7 p.m. Eastern on Fox News for 14 years. She left FNC in September, 2016, after reportedly exercising a “key man” clause in her contract which allowed her to leave after then-CEO Roger Ailes was ousted.
Martha MacCallum took over the FNC time slot in a show called The First 100 Days, which was subsequently renamed The Story.
The MSNBC studio where her similarly named show was located is in the same building as the Fox News bureau in D.C., however, and many of the staffers joined her in the new gig.
Reacting to today’s development, John Coale, her husband/agent, told the New York Times that “They didn’t want her anymore. We’re kind of in shock.” MSNBC’s chief legal correspondent, Ari Melber, is taking over the time slot permanently in July; in the meantime, temporary hosts will fill in.
In her various TV anchor positions, Greta Van Susteren came across generally as a non-ideological, down-the-middle host and interviewer who often covered crime or other nonpolitical, breaking-news stories, often from around the world, such as the Natalee Holloway disappearance.
“Van Susteren was informed that she had not been confrontational enough in her on-air presentation, perhaps a suggestion that MSNBC is once again embracing its liberal roots and adopting a more adversarial posture toward President Donald Trump,” according to a CNN source.
Ratings, or lack thereof, may have been the source of Greta’s abrupt firing by MSNBC, The Hollywood Reporter explained.
“During the second quarter, her 6 p.m. show averaged a ho-hum 980,000 viewers, including a mediocre 207,000 adults in the 25-54 demo. Those kind of numbers would have been great for MSNBC a couple years ago, but now they’re pacing well below originals of most of the MSNBC weekday lineup — even trailing repeats of Rachel Maddow and Lawrence O’Donnell. Across all of cable news in the recently wrapped quarter, Van Susteren’s For the Record ranked a lackluster No. 39 among all shows.”
“For The Record has not managed to hold the ratings of its 5 p.m. lead in, Meet the Press Daily, even as the network is seeing some of it best ratings in other dayparts, in its 21-year history,” reported Adweek.
Although someone who comes across more as a pragmatist than either a conservative or a liberal, it’s conceivable that Greta Van Susteren was unable to connect with the MSNBC fan base simply because of her Fox News resume.
[Featured Image by Charles Dharapak/AP Images]