MSNBC is revamping its primetime lineup, switching in political commentator Rachel Maddow for Dan Abrams at 9 p.m., officials said Wednesday.
The Rachel Maddow Show -- described as “a smart look at politics, pop culture and all the day’s top
stories” -- won’t take over the slot once held by Abrams, who for a time served as MSNBC’s general manager, until Sept. 8, after the Democratic and Republican conventions but before the November presidential election.
“Rachel is unbelievably talented and brilliant; her breadth and depth of knowledge of politics and news is astonishing and I'm so excited to give her a place to really showcase what she can do," MSNBC president Phil Griffin said in a statement. “We've established MSNBC as the place for politics and the destination for viewers who want the smartest take on the day's developments. Adding Rachel into our primetime lineup makes perfect sense."
Abrams, currently the host of Verdict, will remain chief legal correspondent for NBC News and MSNBC. He will also be expanding his role contributing to Dateline and Today and will also serve as an anchor on MSNBC during the day.
"When Dan served as general manager, he really laid the groundwork for MSNBC's success today, with ratings growing 62 percent under his watch,” Griffin said. “Dan helped establish MSNBC as the place for politics, launched our political ‘Super Tuesday’ coverage and was vital in positioning the network for its current success. Dan is the best legal analyst in the business. Our primetime focus is now politics, so this move will enable Dan to focus on what he does best."
In his prepared statement, Abrams said, “Putting my G.M. hat back on, I think this is absolutely the right call.”
The Rachel Maddow Show will feature Maddow's take on the biggest stories of the day, political and otherwise, including lively debate with guests from all sides of the issues, in-depth analysis and stories no other shows in cable news will cover. She will also continue to host The Rachel Maddow Show on Air America at 6 p.m.
In January MSNBC named Maddow a political analyst. She is a regular panelist on MSNBC's Race for the White House withDavid Gregory and a frequent contributor on Countdown withKeith Olbermann. She has been the regular guest host for Countdown, has filled in for Gregory on Race, and has been a regular panelist on MSNBC's 2008 election coverage.
Maddow has worked with Air America Radio since its inception in the spring of 2004.