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If I Didn't Know Better, I'd Say That Jon Klein is a Sexist--Oops, Maybe Klein is a Sexist

Written By mista sense on Friday, April 6, 2007 | 8:32 PM

Here's Jon Friedman of the always must-read Marketwatch website, in his own words about Jon Klein of CNN as he struggled to explain the addition of Kiran Chetry to "American Morning," with a little added bold for emphasis:

"CNN has done it again: It stuck its foot in its mouth in public.

"Maybe the erstwhile Chicken Noodle Network and (Bill) Clinton News Network should now be known as the Crass News Network or Clumsy News Network.

"Remember that regrettable CNN advertisement about its anchor, Paula Zahn? The widely read Drudge Report said at the time, in 2002: "The 20-second promo, which ran on the all-news channel this weekend, features an announcer asking: 'What other morning show has a host who is brilliant, super smart -- and sexy?'"

"Oops. Two words too many.

"You could say that the promotion reduced Zahn, a serious newscaster to the core, to the unwanted role of journalist capable of providing a little cheesecake along with the -- what do you call it? -- news.

"That was an embarrassment to CNN, and by extension to its image-sensitive parent company, Time Warner Inc.

"But CNN's top news executive in the United States, Jonathan Klein, can be accused of coming pretty darned close -- even though Klein reminded me that he wasn't running CNN's news operation when the 'sexy' comment caused a fuss.

"The occasion was a conference call with journalists after CNN announced that Soledad O'Brien and Miles O'Brien (no relation) were out as the anchors of 'American Morning.' John Roberts, who had come over to CNN from CBS, would be replacing them.

This is what transpired on the call, according to the Wall Street Journal's Web site: "As for Ms. Chetry, who joined CNN in February from Fox News Channel, 'One look at her tells you why she deserves the spot,' Mr. Klein said. 'She's a terrific anchor who lights up the screen.'"

Ugh."

That's all Friedman. The Cable Gamer reports, you decide.

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