The host of a new program that figures to be a key element in CNN’s revitalization plans says he wants the new program to look outside the traditional cable news sweet spot of Washington, D.C.
Former ABC News White House correspondent Jake Tapper plans to take the new CNN show beyond politics, writes Joe Flint in the Los Angeles Times.
Tapper will star in "The Lead with Jake Tapper" starting Monday in the 4 p.m. time slot.
"It will be about all sorts of stories that are relevant to our lives," Tapper told the publication. He added he wants to "spread my wings a little beyond politics."
Flint writes, "The show’s 4 p.m. time slot may not be ideal for what is essentially a general-interest newscast. Not only will he be competing against daytime TV, but many news watchers are still at work and don’t have TVs at their desks. Tapper seemed to acknowledge that if things go well the show could find a home when a bigger audience is available."
"I don’t know that we’ll be at 4 p.m. forever," Tapper said.
Flint writes: “The show, he added, will include national, world and financial news as well as a political story or two. There will also be room for some sports and entertainment. Eventually he hopes to have a correspondent assigned full time to the show as well as a rotation of panelists for round-table discussions during the program’s second half-hour.”
Added Tapper: "I’m a reporter. I’m not going to stop making phone calls and trying to find out what is going on just because I have a chair behind a desk."
The new show is part of an overhaul of the cable channel being spearheaded by new CNN President Jeff Zucker.