Ed Schultz, one of the most liberal voices on the MSNBC news cable channel before his show was canceled for low ratings last year, has a new gig courtesy of RT America, the global news network funded by the Russian government.
The network announced that the former host of “The Ed Show” will host a prime-time daily news show called “The News with Ed Schultz.” The show, to be filmed out of RT America’s Washington studios, will debut Jan. 25, the network said.
“Ed Schultz is one of the best-known and well-respected progressive commentators in America,” RT Editor-in-Chief Margarita Simonyan, said in a statement announcing the hire Thursday. “With Ed helming a show, we are continuing the tradition of collaborating with top international journalistic talent that engages our audience by providing in-depth coverage, analysis and commentary on important but underreported issues to millions of U.S. viewers.”
Mr. Schultz said in a statement of his own that his show would focus on such issues as health care, the 2016 election and “the corporate effort to ship jobs overseas” that “threatens the middle class in America.”
The former MSNBC host called RT America, which is based in Moscow and funded by the Kremlin, the “right platform for me to give straight talk and straight news to the American middle class.”
“RT is the go-to channel for an alternative perspective on current events,” he said. “It brings the other side of the story and stories ignored or underreported by the mainstream media.”
Critics say the news channel has a distinct anti-American slant reflecting the tense relations between Moscow and Washington since President Vladimir Putin came to power. Don Irvine, chairman of the conservative media watchdog group Accuracy in Media, said that the pairing of Mr. Schultz and RT America was a fitting one.
“I’m sure Schultz and RT America will be very happy together,” Mr. Irvine wrote in a blog post Thursday. “After all, how hard can it be to become a Russian apologist after spending all those years being a liberal apologist?”