According to Variety, the decision to leave wasn’t exactly her own as MSNBC decided not to renew Cross’ contract after two years, cutting ties with her immediately. Staffers were notified of Cross’ exit on Friday, November 4 and MSNBC has yet to comment directly on the matter.
Cross is known for hosting the commentary program titled Cross Connection. The reporter’s weekend hours will reportedly be taken over by a rotating group of anchors until a replacement is found. Staff is also apparently unaffected by the dismissal of Cross as they’ll continue with their roles on MSNBC.
This announcement comes off the heels of CNBC‘s cancellation of Shepard Smith‘s program, The News With Shepard Smith. Similar to Cross, Smith’s exit came after a two-year run with the news-cable outlet. A former Fox News anchor, Smith already had an established base before joining CNBC to deliver weeknight reports.
And that’s just one of the latest changes to the cable-news space as CNN recently revealed plans to roll back on original series and films, focusing more closely on reporting.
According to Variety, MSNBC’s dismissal of Cross could have something to do with their frayed relationship between them as executives were reportedly concerned about her willingness to address statements made by cable-news hosts on other networks, and engaging in commentary that didn’t meet the standards of MSNBC and NBC News.
The exit comes as a bit of a shock as Cross had been drawing in demos MSNBC hoped to attract — Black viewers, particularly Black female viewers. Cross was a former Washington bureau chief for BET and had worked as a political analyst for MSNBC before she eventually made her way to Cross Connection.
It’s unclear who may fill the anchor’s absent hours, but recent hires like former White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki, Katie Phang, or Symone Sanders are all options. Stay tuned to see what happens next as MSNBC prepares to fill its weekend hours.