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Meghan McCain, the daughter of late former Sen. John McCain and the show’s Republican co-host, said Thursday that she will be leaving the program later this month.
Speaking at the top of Thursday’s show, McCain said she wanted to stay in Washington, D.C., where she lives with her husband, Ben Domenech, and daughter Liberty.
“As any new mom knows, when I think about where I want Liberty to have her first steps and first words, I just have this really wonderful life here that I didn’t want to leave,” McCain said.
McCain also praised her co-hosts, calling them “the most talented women in all of television” and the job “hands down one of the greatest, most wonderful privileges of my life.
“I didn’t want to join the show; it was my dad who encouraged me to do it,” she added. “He was right; it was one of the last things he told me to do before he died.”
“It has been quite wonderful to sit across from you. Your dad was very smart,” Whoopi Goldberg responded.
McCain “recently came to us with her decision to depart the show at the end of this season, a difficult choice that she made for her and her family that we respect and understand,” an ABC News spokesperson said in a statement. “We wish the best for Meghan as she plans her next chapter, and thank her for the passion and unique voice that she shared with us and our viewers each day.”
The View, which was created by ABC News legend Barbara Walters, helped originate the panel show format that is now commonplace on TV, spurring spinoffs like The Talk on CBS and The Five on Fox News. It has had a large rotating cast of panelists and hosts over the years, including Walters (who led the show from its creation in 1997 until her retirement in 2014), Meredith Vieira, Goldberg, Joy Behar, Jenny McCarthy and Rosie O’Donnell.
It has also typically had at least one “conservative” co-host, who would engage in banter (and occasionally arguments) with co-hosts like Behar and O’Donnell. That seat has been filled in the past by Elisabeth Hasselbeck and Jedediah Bila. McCain has filled that role since joining the program in 2017, and reportedly has more than two years left on her contract. Before joining The View McCain was a contributor to MSNBC and Fox News.
McCain has occasionally found herself in hot water for her comments and positions on the program. Earlier this year she apologized for referring to COVID-19 as the “China virus” and has repeatedly called for Dr. Anthony Fauci to be replaced by the Biden administration. Her political comments and occasionally heated debates with co-hosts Behar and Goldberg often became news themselves.
She addressed those on-air dustups in her comments Thursday.
“So if you guys want to fight a little bit more, we have four more weeks,” McCain said jokingly.
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