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Michael Smerconish Joins CNN

SmerconishThe staffing and programming changes continue at CNN with the hire of Michael Smerconish, who will host a weekly Saturday morning show from New York.

Smerconish, an MSNBC contributor who has served as the guest host of “Hardball with Chris Matthews” for the past four years, will join CNN this month. In his new role, he will also appear across all CNN’s programming.

“We are thrilled to have Michael join CNN,” CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker said in a statement. “At a time when the cable news landscape has become increasingly polarized, his independence and passion for reasoned dialogue makes him the perfect fit for CNN.”

The show’s name and debut date have not yet been announced. More from CNN after the jump.

Michael Smerconish will join CNN as host of a new weekly program that will air live on Saturday mornings from New York, it was announced today by CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker. Smerconish will also provide analysis and opinion on CNN programming throughout the week. He joins the network this month.

“We are thrilled to have Michael join CNN,” said Zucker. “At a time when the cable news landscape has become increasingly polarized, his independence and passion for reasoned dialogue makes him the perfect fit for CNN.”

Most recently, Smerconish was an MSNBC contributor and for the last four years served as guest-host for Hardball with Chris Matthews. He will continue hosting his radio show The Michael Smerconish Program on SiriusXM Radio and writing a weekly column for the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Said Smerconish, “I’ve long wanted to host a program of my own and I’m appreciative of Jeff Zucker for making that dream a reality. I think the type of content I seek to provide is perfectly suited for CNN’s non-ideological brand.”

Over the years he has interviewed five U.S. presidents including Presidents Jimmy Carter, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama, as well as Vice Presidents Al Gore, Dick Cheney and Joe Biden.

Smerconish is currently working on his sixth book TALK: A Novel of Politics and the Media, which is due out in May. He is also the author of five previous books, two of them New York Times’ best sellers. He donated all author proceeds from three of those manuscripts to charity. His published books are: Flying Blind: How Political Correctness Continues to Compromise Airline Safety Post 9/11; Muzzled: From T-Ball to Terrorism, True Stories that Should Be Fiction; Murdered By Mumia: A Life Sentence of Loss, Pain and Injustice; Morning Drive: Things I Wish I Knew Before I Started Talking; and Instinct: The Man Who Stopped the 20th Hijacker.

Prior to turning to media and broadcasting full-time Smerconish practiced law for ten years with James E. Beasley, a legendary Philadelphia-based trial lawyer, who is the namesake of the Beasley School of Law at Temple University. He is currently of counsel to the Philadelphia law firm of Kline & Specter. Smerconish graduated from the University of Pennsylvania Law School and Lehigh University. He remains a member of the Bar of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. He lives in Pennsylvania with his family.

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