It's been months since Meghan McCain left The View, and producers have yet to settle on a permanent Republican replacement, much to the other panelists' displeasure. But the show can't move forward with guest hosts forever, so ... what's the hold up?
According to sources close to the program, the host search has "stalled" because executives have yet to find a "conservative cast member who checks all the right boxes," Politico reports. The chosen Republican voice can't be a denier of the 2020 election results, a Jan. 6 sympathizer, or someone who "is seen as flirting too heavily with fringe conspiracy theories or the MAGA wing of the GOP." At the same time, however, the new host must have "credibility" with mainstream Republicans.
"The problem is that they bring people on under the mantle that this woman is a conservative, when they're 'Never Trump,' so they don't represent the country," one of the rotating guest hosts told Politico.
What's more, McCain's successor must maintain a bit of distance from the show's other panelists, "as the network's market research shows that the audience wants to see the women spar," Politico writes. Such a requirement reportedly knocked regular conservative fill-in Ava Navarro out of the running, as she was seen by producers as too friendly with the other women.
"They are really looking for a unicorn," said a former show employee. "They want someone who is going to fight — but not too hard, because they don't want it to be ugly and bickering."
As the search drags on, The View will bring some guests hosts back for a second go in the new year, said a spokesperson: "We look forward to welcoming guest co-hosts for return appearances and introducing new names into the mix in the new year."