NewsNation wants to make a land grab on Sundays.
The Nexstar Media-backed cable outlet will launch its own Sunday public affairs program on March 3, when Chris Stirewalt anchors “The Hill Sunday” at 10 a.m. eastern. Launch of the program adds another competitor in an arena that includes CBS’ “Face The Nation,” ABC’s “This Week,” NBC’s “Meet The Press,” CNN’s “State of the Union” and “Fox News Sunday,” which airs on both Fox and Fox News Channel. Launch of the program comes as NewsNation has been seeking to expand its programming to weekends after spending the bulk of its time devising a weekday schedule.
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“The Hill Sunday” is expected to feature newsmakers and politicians talking about the latest news emanating from the nation’s capital. A panel of guests will offer analysis of the big stories of the week.
“We are delighted that Chris will be joining the new weekend lineup,” said Michael Corn, NewsNation’s president of news, in a statement. “He is a legendary figure in Washington and one of the most respected, intelligent, and well-sourced journalists covering U.S. politics.”
A Sunday news show has become de rigueur for traditional TV news outlets, but the programs have come under scrutiny in recent years. Politicians can get their views out via social media or digital connections to their constituents and followers, making the programs less of a must-stop in their efforts to communicate their positions on various issues. Even so, the shows have proven reliable in recent cycles. Average audiences for the network TV Sunday morning political talk shows on ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC remained mostly stable between 2021 and 2022, according to data from Pew Research Center, with a 5% increase in viewership for CBS.
Stirewalt joined NewsNation in early 2022 after a stint at Fox News, and currently serves as the network’s political editor. He helped plan NewsNation’s first presidential primary debate last December, which generated more than four million viewers across NewsNation and CW Network. He is also the host of two reccurring segments on the weekday political ensemble program “The Hill,” in which he offers key insights regarding the 2024 election cycle.
“Our industry has a nearly 80-year history of devoting time on Sunday mornings to programming that, in its best form, helps Americans to be better citizens by better understanding their government, the issues we face and their choices as voters,” said Stirewalt. “It is a privilege to get to make whatever small contribution I can to that tradition.”
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