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In November 2017, CBS dumped Charlie Rose from CBS This Morning and NBC sacked Matt Lauer from Today.

It’s ironic that two sex pests hosted breakfast shows — designed for family viewing.

Both Rose and Lauer were long-time media legends. As such, they came with a high price tag.

On January 5, Fox News reported that NBC has since found better breakfast broadcasting ratings for less money. NBC is leading ABC’s Good Morning America (GMA) since Hoda Kotb has moved into Lauer’s spot on Today and Savannah Guthrie co-hosts with her:

Kotb will make roughly $18 million per year less than her disgraced male predecessor — reportedly earning $7 million per year while Lauer pulled in $25 million, according to the New York Post

In fact, Kotb’s co-anchor Savannah Guthrie also is believed to earn around $7 million per year …

The Fox article focussed on another highly-paid personality, ABC’s GMA host, George Stephanopolous. He makes between $15 million and $18 million per year. His co-host Robin Roberts reportedly earns the same salary.

The Fox article points out:

With “GMA” now trailing “Today” in viewership, ABC will be under increased pressure to justify its hosts’ exorbitant salaries to ABC’s notoriously parsimonious owner, Disney.

A media analyst agrees:

Media analyst Jeff McCall told Fox News that NBC’s success in recent week proves that the high-paid Lauer wasn’t necessarily the reason people tuned in to the “Today” show. In Kotb, NBC may have a more popular host while saving the network roughly $18 million per year.

“I think a similar case could be made now for George Stephanopoulos at ‘GMA.’ The show can be successful whether George is on the set or not,” McCall said. “’GMA’ is really not a serious news program anyway, and George’s supposed D.C. insider persona just isn’t that essential for a show that wants to focus on fads, entertainment and emotion.”

A network insider agrees:

“He doesn’t bring much to the table anymore,” said an ABC insider, who noted that “’GMA’ covers barely any news. It’s not clear why he’s sitting there.”

Another insider:

called Stephanopoulos “merely a fig leaf for the ugly truth that ABC no longer covers news.” The insider pointed not only to “GMA’s” soft focus, but also to “World News Tonight” frequently leading with weather stories, “20/20” rarely covering news and “Nightline” – increasingly the last bastion for news coverage at ABC – now occupying the graveyard shift at 12:35 a.m. “when nobody watches.”

McCall, the media analyst, says that no one will ever mistake Stephanopoulos for a journalist. Indeed. The man President Donald Trump dubbed ‘Little George’ — the GMA desk had to be modified for him — rose to fame as Bill Clinton’s White House Director of Communications and as his senior adviser.

Ultimately, McCall says:

ABC, and all the morning shows for that matter, should stop throwing huge money at personalities and simply find relatable anchors who have some journalistic instincts and a sense of the nation’s mood.

Indeed.

Even if he were to get bumped from GMA, Stephanopoulos still has his roles as ABC’s chief news anchor and host of the Sunday morning news show, This Week.

What astounds me is the high salaries these people get. Why not take early retirement and spend time with family instead? What about volunteer work? Oh, I forgot: that would put them in touch with ordinary Americans. Never mind.

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