CNN has announced that Kaitlan Collins will serve as the network's anchor of a new 9 p.m. show, beginning in June. Collins, who moderated the recent contentious town hall with former President Trump, has ascended quickly to the role. She will be joined by Poppy Harlow and a rotation of CNN guest anchors.
Collins previously served as CNN This Morning's chief White House correspondent and most recently co-hosted "CNN This Morning." The 9 p.m. hour at CNN has been largely unfilled since former anchor Chris Cuomo was fired in December 2021 after a probe into his involvement in managing his brother, former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's sexual harassment scandal.
The appointment follows last week's town hall debacle with Donald Trump and amid plunging ratings for the network. Since joining CNN from the Daily Caller in 2017, Collins' career has skyrocketed; she was the network’s Chief White House correspondent during the 2020 election.
Her appointment was revealed to staff in a memo by CNN boss Chris Licht, who described Collins as one of the “top reporters and interviewers in the game” and praised her for her unflinching coverage of the Trump administration.
Poppy Harlow will continue to anchor "CNN This Morning" with a series of guest hosts.
In addition to hosting high-profile events like this month’s town hall event featuring former President Trump, CEO Chris Licht lauded Collins as a “smart and gifted journalist” known for pushing politicians off their talking points while bringing fresh reporting that adds new perspectives on current stories.
Collins expressed excitement about joining CNN's primetime lineup for her new show which promises sharp interviews, fresh reporting, and thoughtful conversations on top news stories.
Starting this fall on a full-time basis during prime time at 9 p.m., Eastern Timezone, Collins will take over the hour with a show featuring interviews with newsmakers and panel discussions covering two to three topics a night. Her profile was boosted by moderating the May 10 town hall, which drew an audience of 3.3 million people.
Collins will be the youngest prime time host in cable news history and is set to appear regularly on CNN starting next month.
The promotion of Collins, currently co-hosting CNN's morning show, represents a significant bet by network leadership on a rising star who has impressed colleagues but remains relatively untested as a solo anchor. Licht prizes her ability to connect with viewers outside coastal liberal enclaves and she enjoys respect within political media circles; she is expected to serve as president of the White House Correspondents’ Association beginning in 2024.