ABC News doesn't think former Saturday Night Live star Jon Lovitz is "the ticket" to host a politically-charged news show on the ABC Network. On Monday a spokesman for the media company pitching the Lovitz-anchored show announced that ABC News has no interest in Lovitz.
“It’s obvious that ABC News President Ben Sherwood has no appetite for Jon Lovitz, who's had his share of disagreements with President Obama,” said Bill Jones, president of Fort Lauderdale-based Nothing Really Matters Productions (NRM), the company that pitched the show to ABC News. “Nor does Ben Sherwood seem to like out-of-the-box news shows that appeal to an educated, affluent audience.”
Lovitz, a comedy icon who spent six years on SNL and made the catchphrase, “Yeah! That’s the ticket!” part of the national lexicon, was thrust into the limelight in 2012 when he called President Barack Obama a “f**king a**hole” in response to the president’s remark that the rich don’t pay their fair share of taxes.
For the millions of Lovitz fans across the country, the alleged snub by ABC News did not sit well. The backlash has manifested itself in a petition drive to get Lovitz a show on ABC News despite Ben Sherwood’s out-of-hand rejection.
“People drive television ratings. And there are millions of Jon Lovitz fans out there who want to see Jon – a smart, quick-thinking and politically savvy individual – on ABC News with his own unique news talk show,” said Todd Pennington, a Miami-based marketing consultant who is leading the petition drive. “Jon is a ratings magnet who will offer viewers an exciting show every time out.”
Pennington says that legions of Lovitz fans will travel around the country getting signatures for the petition, including at professional baseball, football, basketball and hockey games. When one million signatures are collected, a goal Pennington said should be realized by end of this year, he and other Lovitz acolytes will personally deliver the petition to ABC News in New York - an event that will broadcast live on the internet.
“ABC News will listen to one million affluent television viewers,” said Pennington. “ABC News has an aging roster of anchors and news personalities. Diane Sawyer? An infomercial for Metamucil. And number two in the ratings.”
When asked to comment on the Jon Lovitz matter, Senior Vice President of ABC News, Jeffrey Schneider, emailed examiner.com four times to give a detailed account of ABC’s version of events “off the record.” After three additional phone calls to this reporter’s contact at NRM, Schneider finally offered up a resounding and enlightening, “Let’s just leave it at no comment.” Among the core questions Schneider left unanswered was, “Does Ben Sherwood like Jon Lovitz?” For a guy who makes his living talking about news, Ben Sherwood is not talking about Lovitz.
A number of prominent media pundits have accused broadcast network news shows of pandering to America’s left-leaning constituent base and of shilling for President Obama. One media pundit has gone as far to say that contemporary newscasts exhibit a “whorish propensity to cater to its liberal base.” If the pundit is correct, it bodes well for Jon Lovitz’s chances at ABC News, because every whore needs a Jon.