The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

16 November 2006

Al Franken, Air America Radio


Franken Leaving Air America Radio

*** Breaking News -- Friday Updates ***

Is this the end
for Stuart Smalley on the airwaves?

We're hearing that Al Franken is leaving Air America and giving up on talk radio, most likely for good.

His last day on the air will apparently be December 8. Already, a few libtalk stations have begun to leak word of Franken's impending exit.

One is KQKE Radio in San Francisco, which recently cancelled Franken and replaced him with Thom Hartmann, a more obscure "progressive" who airs in the same time slot. A check of Franken's site Thursday evening did not turn up any mention of a departure and the company itself has as of yet said nothing.

This confirms rumors we'd been hearing for weeks from industry sources and Air America listeners that are now backed up by these on- air announcements. What A Mockery, a liberal blog site, captured the audio of KQKE Radio's announcement here. Its main page is found here.

While Franken's contract was recently rewritten in order to extend through the spring of 2007, all bets were off once Air America entered bankruptcy, since Franken's continued participation was directly tied to the network's solvency.

With just a week remaining in which to nail down a buyer, Air America is truly skating on thin ice at this point. Does the impending loss of Franken's show hurt its resale value?

In addition, is there any connection between this move and the five stations that have dropped the liberal talk radio format since election day?

As for his likely US Senate run, it would not have required Franken to exit his radio show until a formal announcement was made, which is likely to occur at least nine months from now. So this departure appears to be tied to the network's financial troubles.

We'll have much more on this breaking story as details emerge.

FAIR QUESTION: why report this now, rather than when rumors first surfaced weeks ago? The difference is that it can be verified via the affiliates, while there was no way to do so at the time.

ALSO COVERING THIS TODAY: Newsbusters, USS Neverdock, the Dental Blog, BoreAmerica and others.

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Frankendisaster, I'm Rich: David A Lunde


  • I have to admit that I've only listened to AirHead Radio a couple of times...just to get a 'feel for it'.

    It was bad. It was inaccurate. It was annoying.

    Good riddance...

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 16 November, 2006 21:44  

  • oh no, whomever shall fill the void? Al, please don't leave us. Your idiotic rants will no longer fill (read: pollute) our nation's airwaves. Where, oh where, shall we find such shortsighted thinking? (sarcasm mode off)

    Oh yeah, the Dems control Congress...then there's always Randi Rhodes(who I thought was better not only as a man, but as Ozzy's guitarist)

    By Blogger Stacy, at 16 November, 2006 22:40  

  • This is not news. I mentioned this weeks ago, and at least one station publicly mentioned this fact on their program schedule, explaining why Thom Hartmann was taking on Franken's spot!

    I did not care for Franken personally or think he made a very good radio host, but he had excellent guests and did help to guide more moderate liberal and centrist voters through the most recent midterms, enabling our nation to begin the cleansing cycle.

    For that, and that alone, I am grateful.

    More importantly, what will happen to this blog, now that the focus of its obsessive fixation is moving on to other endeavors?

    By Blogger hashfanatic, at 16 November, 2006 23:07  

  • ...because he's not good enough, he's not smart enough and doggone it, people don't like him.

    By Blogger Dave, at 16 November, 2006 23:10  

  • Be careful what you wish for, peoples.

    He's leaving because he's running for Senate, and if the mood of the country is anything like it is now, in two years, he'll be Sen. Franken (D-MN).

    By Blogger Martimac, at 16 November, 2006 23:32  

  • Good Luck Al! While I don't care if you win the primary, I do care that Norm Coleman gets his ass thrown out of office which shouldn't be too difficult since he is not an especially popular senator in Minnesota.

    By Blogger Elmonica, at 17 November, 2006 00:35  

  • After having listened to Al a few times I can honestly say that he has earned every penny.

    By Blogger Fast Eddie, at 17 November, 2006 00:51  

  • Martimac, you're delusional. Yes, Franken is planning to run against Norm Coleman, but that seat ain't in play for a long time.

    He's jumping ship in front of Clear Channel going private, and selling off four hundred or so small market stations, many of which are AAR affiliates. Even AAR's fans here on Brian's blog regularly say they like Randi or Malloy better than that boring,monotone idiot.

    He's quitting before he gets canned, plain and simple. Hartmann, Schultz and Lionel can all draw better numbers and offer better, more professional product, and he could never stand losing his timeslot.

    By Blogger TC, at 17 November, 2006 03:23  

  • Franken is just another rat leaving a sinking ship.

    All you libs hear this. this blog will be around and better than ever. You idiots said the same thing about Limbaugh when Clinton left offica. I see Limbaugh is here and just as big if not bigger thorn in your sides.

    By Blogger PCD, at 17 November, 2006 07:50  

  • He can't very well be a thorn in anyone's side when he's too busy trying to pull the needle out of his own arm...

    The few progressive talk show hosts allowed to broadcast freely will turn down their rhetoric as the horror show of the past six years and the helplessness fades, and the battle turns more toward investigations, legal actions, possible impeachment, restitution, etc.

    And the regressive neocons, the ultimate lemmings, will do as they always do.

    They will follow.

    By Blogger hashfanatic, at 17 November, 2006 08:13  

  • Replace him with Hartman, one of the most educated and qualified radio hosts in America. cons fear Hartman, the man is a walking history book. Cons have bigoted dropouts like Limbaugh, Savage and Beck. Hartman would be the best possible national host. Franken is a great guy, great writer, dull host. I hope this is true, it will save them millions.

    By Blogger Minister of Propaganda, at 17 November, 2006 12:34  

  • PCD, Limbaugh has NO credibility. NONE. Limbaugh is not a thorn in anybodies side, he helped the Dems win, he is a mentally sick, drug addict. I hope Limbaugh stays on the radio forever. Thaks for November 7th, drug addled high school flunkie

    By Blogger Minister of Propaganda, at 17 November, 2006 12:39  

  • AAR stations are dropping like flies.
    In Boston the ratings are microscopic
    at Clear Channel-owned WKOX and WXKS.
    While technically those stations are not on the list of selloffs, the low
    ratings indicate they may eventually be. No doubt they, too, will soon
    change to a format that actually makes money like sports, Spanish, or

    By Blogger raccoonradio, at 17 November, 2006 13:12  

  • Really whitebread Repub of you there, Maloney. The friggin' "Dental Blog" gets the linky love, but nothing for the LeatherPenguin?

    Whassup with that? You just another shanty Mick from Massachusetts or something?

    By Blogger TC, at 17 November, 2006 13:47  

  • Some faker got the blogger name
    Brian Maloney (blog: kxjhbnsdfsf)

    Though the part about WRKO is true.
    Still, ratings are much higher than AAR.

    By Blogger raccoonradio, at 17 November, 2006 16:06  

  • Wasn't Maloney recently harping on Jerry Springer for allowing his name to used by an imposter?

    What the frak is going on with you Maloney that you can't implement your own suggestions?

    By Blogger Elmonica, at 17 November, 2006 16:35  

  • Do you think Minnesota will actually elect Stuart Smalley?

    While entertainers often get elected to public office, that is because they are entertaining. Al Franken was not. This was a guy who stayed on SNL - basically an entertainers training show - for 20 years. And he certainly was never that funny. So his effectiveness as a campaigner is questionable. In addition, he has several years of partisan rants that can very easily be taken out of context and used by Senator Coleman's campaign.

    So if the mood of America is not like it is now, I highly doubt that we will see a Senator Franken.

    By Blogger EricMatthew, at 18 November, 2006 00:11  

  • You're saying Minnesota should reject Franken because he's not funny enough for the job?

    By Blogger hashfanatic, at 18 November, 2006 02:49  

  • >>And he certainly was never that funny.

    If MN elects him it would probably be for his politics not his humor or lack thereof. The inability to tell a joke hasn't hampered Kerry's re-elections in MA.

    By Blogger raccoonradio, at 18 November, 2006 12:12  

  • Or is Al leaving after all? Lib talk blog
    "According to Steve Young at Huffington Post, Al Franken will not be giving up his Air America Radio show anytime soon. Right Wing media outlets in the know about liberal talk, reported the breaking "news" that Al Franken would be leaving Air America on 12/8. Newsbusters, Brian Maloney's Radioequalizer, and a number of other sites all gleefully reported Al's departure from AAR.

    1. Al is leaving all right...for Iraq and Afghanistan on a USO Tour.

    2. While some have said he's leaving Air America, he hasn't. As Al told me last night, at this point, he's "made no decision on leaving the show."
    So, if you've heard of Al's AA demise, even from some quack in the Huffington Post, it might serve well not to believe everything you read. It's kind of like believing right wing talk radio. You'll only get misinformation and quite possibly, lose an election. Better to listen directly to Al. And you still can.

    By Blogger raccoonradio, at 18 November, 2006 13:08  

  • I don't know.

    At any rate, Franken's had a hand in contributing to the rumors, by not addressing them. He could literally ridicule anyone directly during one of his humor segments and simultaneously get out word that it's all nonsense, but he doesn' he shouldn't beef on others for speculating.

    By Blogger hashfanatic, at 18 November, 2006 18:47  

  • Raccoonradio:

    Yes, someone has been impersonating me. I actually had deleted that comment when it was posted, but a Blogger glitch kept it there. Should be gone now.

    By Blogger Brian Maloney, at 18 November, 2006 21:54  

  • Ah more El Monica dribble. Bitter lad,isn't it time to fix the broken record at your single wide?

    By Blogger Owen, at 19 November, 2006 10:42  

  • Owen
    I think the word you want is drivel.

    By Blogger Elmonica, at 19 November, 2006 13:11  

  • No, actually in Oweeee's case, it was correct the first time around...

    By Blogger hashfanatic, at 20 November, 2006 01:28  

  • Look at the bright side, this frees him up to do that Stuart Smally movie they've always talked about. Saturday Night Live sketches evolved into movies are always funny........right?!!

    By Blogger Freudian Slip, at 20 November, 2006 06:17  

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