Eliot Spitzer Wishes Keith Olbermann Well Following Current TV Drama

The "Viewpoint" anchor praises his predecessor but also firmly aligns himself with network co-founder Al Gore.
Rob Kim/Everett Collection

Eliot Spitzer says he hasn't spoken with Current predecessor Keith Olbermann since his messy departure from the cable news channel.

"If I were to, I'd just wish him well," Spitzer told THR in a news conference Tuesday. "Life is long, and we all go up, down, sideways. I just wish folks well."

Current introduced Spitzer in Olbermann's 8 p.m. ET timeslot hours after announcing the Countdown anchor's firing. The former New York governor's program, Viewpoint, debuted to dismal ratings following the Olbermann ouster.

"Keith brought ... intensity, audience," said Spitzer, adding: "He's just one of those magnetic personalities that you like to watch. And I've watched a lot of different reporters, or anchors, or people on TV, and tried to figure out what makes them so persuasive or interesting. You've got superstars like Katie Couric and Anderson Cooper and Bill O'Reilly."

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"I can't be any one of them," he continued. "I don't pretend to bring the effervescence of Katie Couric, or the smooth charm of Anderson Cooper or the right-wing stuff of Bill O'Reilly. You have to be different. And the lesson I've taken from this is you've got to be yourself and, if it works, wonderful, it if doesn't, don't take it as a personal slight."

Olbermann, famously volatile, was officially axed from Current on March 30, with network founders Al Gore and Joel Hyatt citing breach of contract, sabotage and disparagement. 

"I have enormous respect for Keith (as) a talent and a person," Spitzer said. "I have enormous friendship, respect and regard for Vice President Gore. He's somebody whom I've supported politically, before I knew him."