NBC News’ Decision to Hire Ronna McDaniel Was ‘Unanimous’ Among Leadership | Exclusive

Rachel Maddow plans to discuss McDaniel’s hiring on her show Monday night, an individual with knowledge tells TheWrap

Ronna McDaniel
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NBC News’ decision to hire former RNC chair Ronna McDaniel, which has sparked backlash in recent days, was “unanimous across leadership” from NBC News and MSNBC, an executive at the network told TheWrap. 

Since the announcement, critics and staffers have expressed alarm with McDaniel’s political history, particularly over her role in aiding Donald Trump’s effort to overturn the 2020 presidential election. 

Internal frustration at NBC News over the hire has even made it to air, with Chuck Todd suggesting the reason NBC News staffers are “uncomfortable” with the hire is “because many of our professional dealings with the RNC over the last six years have been met with gaslighting, have been met with character assassination.”

“This was kind of expected broadly speaking across executives,” the executive said of the criticism. “Everyone was fully aware of past circumstances around partisan contributor hires.”

Another individual with knowledge of the situation told TheWrap that MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow is planning to discuss McDaniel’s hire on her show airing Monday evening. 

The network has previously faced backlash over partisan analyst hires. Most recently, controversy was stirred when Jen Psaki was hired to host an MSNBC show after serving as President Joe Biden’s White House press secretary. But the backlash to that decision was far less fierce.

“I bet by the end of the week, NBC is going to have to change its decision and buy Ronna out of her contract,” the individual added. 

MSNBC anchor Nicolle Wallace also blasted the decision on Monday, showing clips of all the anchors who have publicly dissented from the hiring decision.

Wallace questioned how “to make sure we’re not willingly handing over our airwaves, willingly handing over our power.”

Initially, McDaniel was announced as a political analyst who would contribute to all NBC News and MSNBC platforms. Since the announcement, the cable news network has effectively distanced itself from McDaniel’s hiring. 

MSNBC president Rashida Jones told employees that the network has no plans to use Ronna McDaniel as a contributor on their programming, according to reporting from the Wall Street Journal

However, an individual with knowledge of the situation pushed back against the notion of a “formal edict” regarding McDaniel’s MSNBC contribution.

On Monday morning, MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” slammed NBC’s decision to hire McDaniel and hoped that the network would reconsider. 

“We weren’t asked our opinion of the hiring, but if we were, we would have strongly objected to it for several reasons,” co-host Joe Scarborough said, referring to McDaniel’s role in Trump’s efforts to overturn the result of the 2020 presidential election. 

“It goes without saying that she will not be a guest on Morning Joe in her capacity as a paid contributor,” co-host Mika Brzezinski added. 

Comments

3 responses to “NBC News’ Decision to Hire Ronna McDaniel Was ‘Unanimous’ Among Leadership | Exclusive”

  1. Peggy Bentley Avatar
    Peggy Bentley

    Dear Megan, McDaniel won’t need your good luck wishes….what she needs is a job ‘cause she’s not coming to MSNBC.

    You should put in a good word for her at your gig….

  2. Allan Martin Avatar
    Allan Martin

    I will definitely be boycotting NBC and encouraging others to do the same as long as Ms McDaniel is a paid contributor to NBC or MSNBC News. Absolutely disgraceful!

  3. JustNo Avatar
    JustNo

    I wish I watched NBC so I could boycott it. 

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