Keith Olbermann Not Covering Iowa Caucus Amid Reports of Tension With Current TV
Keith Olbermann will be noticeably absent from Current TV's election coverage on one of the biggest political nights of the year.
According to the cable news channel's current schedule, Olbermann will not be anchoring any of its Iowa caucus coverage Jan. 3.
Instead, former vice president Al Gore will be joining Current's lesser-known anchors, Cenk Uygur and Jennifer Granholm to man the network's Politically Direct 2012: Iowa Caucus special.
This large absence in the political field, which has historically been Olbermann's bread and butter (he was MSNBC's political special reports anchor), adds fuel to an already-growing fire that the anchor is not happy at his new network. Olbermann, moved to Current from MSNBC in June.
The New York Times cites four anonymous sources who confirm the reports, highlighting one who called him "disgruntled."
A reporter from the paper contacted Olbermann via email about his absence from the Iowa caucus coverage. "That's not my understanding," he responded, according to the Times. "We've already prepared a 'Best of Countdown' Monday [Jan. 2], and are planning a live Countdown on Tuesday."
However, Olbermann's Countdown is absent from the Channel's published schedule for both Jan. 2 and 3rd, returning the day after the caucus, Jan. 4.
The Times also reports that Current will have the same schedule, featuring Uygur and Granholm, for the New Hampshire primary Jan. 10.
Uygur and Granholm were hired to anchor shows before and after Olbermann's 8 p.m. EST Countdown, respectively.
Uygur's Young Turks made its Current debut in Nov. in the 7 p.m. time slot, while Granholm's War Room is scheduled to start next month at 9 p.m.
Countdown's ratings have suffered since it's hop from MSNBC, where it used to regularly draw over one million viewers.