Is Megyn Kelly’s future on the Today show at risk? That’s a tricky question, but if viewers don’t start warming up to her, Hoda Kotb and Kathie Lee Gifford have major plans to take over her 9 a.m. hour on the morning program.
Megyn is the first to admit she’s not the warm and cuddly type. In her 2016 book Settle for More, she writes that she has failed to connect with other women because of her “threatening” personality. However, since taking over the 9 a.m. hour of the Today show with her Megyn Kelly Today program in September, she has made it her mission to make viewers like her — without compromising who she is at her core.
“I insist the world come to understand that no woman must choose between being strong and being fun, being tough and being liked,” she recently said. “It can all happen at once.” But it’s just not happening for her.
Viewers are fleeing, and many believe it’s because the former Fox News host’s personality is a poor fit for morning TV — and now NBC is considering a big move. Insiders told In Touch, Hoda, 53, and Kathie Lee, 64, who currently host the light and bubbly 10 a.m. hour of Today, are pushing bosses to swap times slots with the 47-year-old for the sake of the lucrative morning show franchise — which generates $500 million in ad revenue per year.
Seeing that their own ratings have dipped because of Megyn’s weak lead-in to their hour, “Hoda and Kathie Lee told executives that their family-friendly show should be on at 9 a.m. because Megyn’s talk show is not a good fit,” the source explained. “It never really was.”
For Hoda and Kathie Lee, this was not a mean girls’ power play. “They totally support women moving up the ladder, and both agree that Megyn is a great journalist. But all the media coaching in the world won’t make her relatable,” the source said. (A second source insisted that the ratings are up, and that this is another baseless rumor about Megyn.)
For nine months, Hoda and Kathie Lee have watched in horror as Megyn made gaffe after gaffe — she asked one fan of Will and Grace if watching the show made him gay — and insulted celebrity guests like Jane Fonda. “Friends, family, and fans all told Hoda and Kathie Lee that viewers just don’t relate to Megyn,” the source added. “So, Hoda told her bosses — and they listened.”
The single mom has newfound clout at NBC since taking over Matt Lauer’s anchor chair in November when he was fired for sexual misconduct. Her presence drove ratings up to beat rival Good Morning America on ABC. “In many ways, Hoda stepped in and saved the day at Today, which is what NBC was expecting Megyn to do when they poached her from Fox,” another insider said about Megyn, who’s costing the network a reported $23 million in yearly salary — more than three times what Hoda makes. Now it’s not a matter of if they move Megyn — but when. “The network gave her a shot,” the source said. “But, she’s just not daytime material.”
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