Vanity Fair has published an exclusive and long interview with Rachel Maddow—and it is a very deep dive.

EXCLUSIVE: RACHEL MADDOW GIVES HER FIRST INTERVIEW AS SHE STEPS BACK FROM THE NIGHTLY GRIND AND REVS UP FOR HER NEXT ACT

Yes, Vanity Fair only allows 4 free views per person each month.  But if your laptop doesn’t work, try your iPhone or Android phone.  Or try your computer at work or a family member’s computer. Because this interview is long and filled with a ton of juicy details plus many money quotes from Maddow herself.  It’s just way too long to quote everything here (not that we’re allowed to do that, of course)…

In October 2010, after a particularly rollicking broadcast from a historic Delaware tavern, where the Maddow Show was covering a Senate showdown between Chris Coons and Christine O’Donnell (remember her?), an exhausted Maddow remarked to a colleague, “A person could only do this job for five years.”

As if. Maddow, at 49, has been behind the desk for almost a decade and a half. She’s been doing the job long enough that it supremely messed up her back, which now has seven herniated or bulging discs that she manages with physical therapy. Long enough that when she had a melanoma scare within months of Mikula ending up on death’s door with COVID, it sunk in that she didn’t want to be working 60 hours a week until she retires.

That’s just one pertinent passage.

They talked to Netflix. They talked to Amazon. They talked to Spotify, Showtime, CNN. Jeff Zucker, president of CNN at the time, toyed with the idea of hiring Maddow for the network’s ill-fated streaming service, CNN+. The brass surmised that having Maddow, from a liberal network, and Chris Wallace, from conservative Fox News, would give the platform a certain range. But Maddow’s agents balked at the proposed salary, in the $10 to $15 million range, according to people who know the numbers. There was a much bigger opportunity on the table: SiriusXM was poised to offer Maddow closer to $40 million plus a first-look deal, sources told me. (Sirius had no comment.) The idea was that she could do a weekday talk show and still pursue all of her other creative projects. This wouldn’t free Maddow from the daily grind, but it was a tempting proposition. She had a lot to think about.

Apparently, she even very briefly worked with Tucker Carlson on his MSNBC show in 2005. I didn’t even know he ever had a show on MSNBC!

She also got advice on how to make her show better from…(you may want to sit down when you read this)…Roger Ailes.  Yes, they were kinda sorta friends.  She states she has respect for Sean Hannity and that Carlson is “talented.”

Mind blowing stuff.  Well worth a read.

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This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.

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