The staff of Air America Media was informed this afternoon that they will cease live programming today and will soon file Chapter 7, ending an often turbulent financial effort to challenge conservative dominance in talk radio.
Air America chairman Charlie Kireker cited the depressed ad market for the closure, and the inability to come up with new investors. He also outlined some of the network's accomplishments in bringing talk personalities to the fore, including Rachel Maddow and Al Franken.
The network started in 2004, with a reach that extended to about 100 radio outlkets across the country.
But it faced financial challenges throughout its life, even as its hosts generated publicity and gained a following and, in Franken's case, launched a successful campaign for Senate. It filed for bankruptcy protection in 2006 before being rescued by Green Family Media. In recent years its mix of hosts have included Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Montel Williams and Ron Reagan.
Another personality, Ana Marie Cox, Tweeted after hearing the news: "Credentialed WH reporter. Will bloviate for bourbon."