Gotham TV vet looks to jumpstart net's 'mechanisms'

NEW YORK — MSNBC has tapped TV vet Jerry Nachman as veepee and editor-in-chief.

The position was invented for Nachman, an Emmy-winning journalist who was once editor of the New York Post.

A stalwart of the New York TV world, Nachman, who will report to MSNBC prexy Erik Sorenson, was news director for WNBC-TV and veepee for WCBS before moving to the Post. Most recently he was a staff writer for the NBC primetime drama “UC: Undercover.”

In third place in the cable ratings behind Fox News and CNN, MSNBC has an uphill battle. “We have a lot to do editorially,” Sorenson said. “We didn’t have the right mechanisms.”

Aside from his duties in the managerial realm, Nachman will be featured on a daily afternoon show with the working title of “What Have We Learned Today.”

By hiring high-octane polemicists such as Alan Keyes, Phil Donahue — and now Nachman — cabler seems to be following the Fox News model of personality-driven news analysis.

When asked about the cabler’s newfound taste for outsized hosts, Sorenson was unrepentant. “There’s a lot of vigorous debate and some strong personalities out there — I can’t think of any on CNN, Carville maybe,” he said, adding, “but, yes, it’s intentional. I plead guilty.”

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