The premiere episode of season 19 on the ABC daytime staple “The View” featured a new lineup of co-hosts — and brought the season’s first controversy.
Whoopi Goldberg continues to hold down the moderator’s job, and the new season marks the return of Joy Behar after two seasons away from the show. Raven-Symone and Michelle Collins return for their sophomore seasons, joined by newcomers Paula Faris and Candace Cameron Bure.
Bure is the show’s new designated “conservative voice,” according to many observers, and that’s what the latest controversy is about, the New York Post reports.
“The actress wasn’t a part of the panel’s heated debate over Kentucky clerk Kim Davis, who was jailed for denying same-sex marriage certificates,” the paper reports. “Bure’s absence until later in the show had critics questioning whether ‘The View’ was trying to mute her conservative voice.”
But a rep for the show said Bure’s absence from the debate was purely innocent, explaining: “We had her on for ‘segment three’ because she’s not going to be on [regularly] for a couple of weeks. We want to build consistency to let viewers know who would be on for tomorrow.”
Bure continues to shoot “Fuller House,” her other TV job, and says that after the sitcom’s 13th episode wraps in November, she will be in the lineup for “The View” full time.
The Post report throws a little bit of cold water on Bure’s “designated conservative” role.
“Bure got in a heated debate over same-sex marriage with co-host Raven-Symone last summer,” the Post notes. “At the time, sources told us ABC was planning to hire her to be the conservative to go up against Symone. The show’s rep denies it — ‘She wasn’t hired as the resident conservative. That diminishes her role on the show.’”
Here’s a clip of the Kim Davis debate posted by “The View”: