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Imus Is Back: Contrite, But Not Mincing Words

Don Imus
AP
Don Imus

Don Imus came back on air this morning--the big news is that he was repeatedly apologetic for his inappropriate remark about the Rutgers women's basketball team. And his being contrite means advertisers will be a lot more comfortable supporting his show. Another sign that Imus doesn't want to look racist, his new cast includes two black comedians.

But Imus still hasn't forgotten his friends. Sidekick and news reader Charles McCord is back with him. And interestingly enough, so is Bernard McGuirk, who if you remember, made the first negative reference to the Rutgers' team that led to Imus getting fired.

I think the indication of Imus' future audience is all in his guests. His first show this morning included two presidential candidates, Republican John McCain and Democrat Chris Dodd. He also had James Carville and Mary Matalin, the political analyst duo.

Not a bad lineup. And what about concerns that Imus will be so cautious about being politically correct that he won't have that edge that gained him oh-so-many viewers? He said he would use his new show to talk about race relations, saying, "Other than that, not much has changed. Dick Cheney is still a war criminal, Hillary Clinton is still Satan and I'm back on the radio." Satan? Well, he certainly isn't mincing words.

Questions? Comments? MediaMoney@cnbc.com

  • Working from Los Angeles, Boorstin is CNBC's media and entertainment reporter and editor of CNBC.com's Media Money section.