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MSNBC Names Rachel Maddow's Successor: Alex Wagner

The anchor and Circus co-host will take over Maddow's coveted time slot four days a week.
  • Alex Wagner (Photo: NBC News)
    Alex Wagner (Photo: NBC News)

    MSNBC has found its new Rachel Maddow.

    The news network has been on the hunt for a successor ever since Maddow began scaling back her hosting duties on The Rachel Maddow Show to just one episode a week, and today it announced that Alex Wagner is its pick.

    Wagner is a well-respected journalist, analyst, and anchor on the progressive news circuit and has a history anchoring for MSNBC. She's also a co-host on Showtime's The Circus.

    Her new show, which has yet to be given an official title, will premiere August 16 and air Tuesdays through Fridays.

    The New York Times broke the story Monday, with MSNBC president Rashida Jones telling the paper that Wagner's political experience would be crucial in covering the upcoming midterm elections.

    "This is not a show where our hair is on fire and we're yelling past each other, and we're creating these manufactured moments of tension,” Jones said. "I really want the takeaway from this show to be a better understanding of what's happening in the world."

    In an interview with Variety, Jones said that Wagner's "got something to say," adding that she plans for the show to be more than simply relaying the news. "She pulls in perspective. She brings in some of the context throughout her discussion," Jones continued. "She knows politics. She knows everything from foreign policy to culture."

    Wagner expressed her gratitude for the opportunity in her own statement, saying "I'm honored to be anchoring a key hour of television in such a critical time for American democracy. In many ways, the stakes have never been higher, and there's no better place to explore this moment than MSNBC. I'm thrilled to be coming home."

    A rotation of anchors will fill the 9 PM slot until Wagner's new show launches on August 16,

    Kirstie Renae is a writer, blogger, and Austin-based actress with a penchant for binge-watching TV with her dogs. Follow her on Twitter @KirstieRenae.

    TOPICS: Alex Wagner, MSNBC, Showtime, The Circus, The Rachel Maddow Show, Rachel Maddow