Moderate Smerconish is going to satellite radio

Philadelphia talk show host Michael Smerconish is leaving regular radio for satellite beginning April 15.

Smerconish took on the industry’s big guy, talk radio icon Rush Limbaugh, and lost.

He has been a fixture in Philadelphia talk radio for two decades, most recently on 1210 AM where his show is syndicated nationally.

The jump to Sirius XM satellite radio is a natural progression, he says, because terrestrial talk radio doesn’t work for him anymore.

“Today’s talk radio is not the talk radio field that I entered 20 years ago,” Smerconish said. “It’s become increasingly polarized. I think that, much like the Republican Party, it’s become too white, too male, too old and too angry.”

Smerconish was in the noon-to-3 p.m. slot, going up against Limbaugh.

Even in the Philadelphia market, Limbaugh doubled Smerconish’s ratings.  

Michael Harrison of Talkers magazine says the move shows it’s hard for more moderate hosts such as Smerconish to compete.

“There has not been a major superstar of the ilk of a Sean Hannity or Rush Limbaugh that is a card-carrying moderate,” Harrison said.

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