Sharpton Says His New Show Is 'The New Battlefield'
Rev. Sharpton ends speculation by landing MSNBC show 'PoliticsNation'
After weeks of discussion and controversy, MSNBC has finally confirmed that Rev. Al Sharpton will have his own show on MSNBC called "PoliticsNation," which will air at 6 p.m.
In a statement made to Loop 21 about the show, Sharpton said:
"When you look at the last 15 years, there was a rise of the Right Wing that manifested itself through George W. Bush and later the Tea Party. A lot of that was driven by talk show news. The battlefield now is in the studio of radio and talk television. You can't go to the Jordan River with a Red Sea strategy, and I applaud MSNBC for their strategy"
Said MSNBC President Phil Griffin in a statement to the press:
“I’ve known Rev. Sharpton for over a decade and have tremendous respect for him. He has always been one of our most thoughtful and entertaining guests. I’m thrilled that he’s now reached a point in his career where he’s able to devote himself to hosting a nightly show. ‘PoliticsNation’ is going to be an incredibly strong kick-off to our evening schedule.”
A few weeks ago Sharpton gave Loop 21 an exclusive interview about why he did not attend the National Association of Black Journalists conference in Philadelphia. He said he did not want to be a distraction to the topic he was invited to speak on, which was politics. However, he did address with Loop 21 criticism shared by some black journalists that there were perhaps better qualified journalists to host a talk show on MSNBC. Sharpton said in that exchange that not all journalists, especially print journalists, have what it takes to run an opinionated TV talk show. Sharpton also said that if some journalists are making the argument that a certain "standard" should be followed for selecting TV hosts then what is the criteria?
A follow-up interview with the new NABJ president Gregory Lee, answered Sharpton's concerns saying that they were "happy" that Sharpton was being considered to host the show, but also that a professional association like NABJ has the right to set standards for journalists.