New Gingrich-Led 'Crossfire' Debuts Monday with Syria Issue
Sunday, September 8, 2013 04:37 PM
By: Jim Meyers
The new version of the classic "Crossfire" program featuring former House Speaker Newt Gingrich debuts Monday evening on CNN.
The debate show is returning to its original format, with one liberal and one conservative panelist debating the issues of the day, usually with guests sandwiched in between.
Joining 2012 Republican presidential candidate Gingrich on the right is conservative pundit S.E. Cupp. Panelists on the left are former Obama green jobs czar Van Jones and Stephanie Cutter, Obama's deputy campaign chairperson.
The original "Crossfire" aired from 1982 to 2005, with panelists including Pat Buchanan, James Carville, Mary Matalin, and the late Robert Novak.
The new 30-minute program airs weeknights at 6:30 p.m. Eastern time.
"When facts matter, this is the show you want to watch," Gingrich tells Newsmax.
"We actually want to set up a program where both sides are getting an even break, and we’re trying to rely very heavily on people who actually know something.
"Our hope is we get a lot of conservatives who wouldn't necessarily think of themselves as CNN viewers, who may be Newt viewers or S.E. Cupp viewers."
He predicts that Cupp will "bring a lot of energy and frankly a level of risk-taking that's going to be fun to watch."
Van Jones is "obviously very far to the left and has been a very aggressive activist on left-wing causes," Newt says.
As for Stephanie Cutter, Gingrich adds, "In terms of a sheer debater, she's pretty formidable in her own right."
Unlike the original CNN, the new version will delve into only one issue each evening and explore that topic in depth.
Gingrich said the goal of "Crossfire" is that at the end of 30 informative minutes, people will be thinking about the debate and "curious about the next show."