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CNN gets NBC’s Brown

CNN yesterday said it has hired anchor Campbell Brown of NBC News, one day after she announced on “Weekend Today” that she would be leaving as host.

CNN did not say immediately what Miss Brown would be doing. There has been widespread speculation about a prime-time shake-up at CNN, where Paula Zahn has been lagging in the ratings at 8 p.m.

Miss Brown, 39, had been co-host with Lester Holt of “Weekend Today” since 2003 as well as correspondent and occasional fill-in anchor on NBC’s “Nightly News.” She’s a former White House reporter who also covered the 2000 presidential election for NBC News.

According to Associated Press, Miss Brown was considered a potential successor to Katie Couric for the weekday “Today” post, a job that went to Meredith Vieira.

“We wish Campbell the best,” said NBC News spokeswoman Allison Gollust.

Several anchors will be filling in over that time, she said.

Female prez for ‘24’

The United States will have a female president next year — on the Fox TV series “24.”

Tony Award-winning actress Cherry Jones will play President Allison Taylor when the show about the exploits of counterterrorism agent Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland) returns in January for its seventh season, the network announced Sunday.

Miss Jones‘ term will coincide with Democratic Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton’s presidential bid, but Fox Entertainment Chairman Peter Liguori said fiction and real-world politics will not intersect.

“It’s a dramatic decision. The president is a very important piece of ‘24,’ ” he told AP. “We’ve had a broad array of presidents on the show; why not a female president?”

The series has been an Oval Office groundbreaker before, with Dennis Haysbert playing President Palmer, the nation’s first black president.

WWE ratings take hit

Will Vince McMahon’s WWE suffer a backlash from wrestler Chris Benoit’s June 24 murder of his wife and son and subsequent suicide?

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