The controversial new addition to Today show's line up

Kristine Tarbert
Senior Lifestyle & Entertainment Producer
Looks like there is another new addition to the Today show regulars. Photo: Instagram/thetodayshow

Since a major casting shake-up last year there have been plenty of new faces on the Today show.

And now the Channel Nine breakfast show is set to make another addition to its line-up, albeit a potentially controversial one.

According to The Australian, One Nation leader Pauline Hanson has struck a deal with the network to appear on the program once a fortnight.

One Nation leader Pauline Hanson. Photo: Getty

The outspoken politician won’t be on an actual contract, but Channel Nine confirmed to Yahoo Lifestyle that for each appearance a “small donation will be made to a worthy local charity in her electorate”.

It’s no secret the Today show is losing the war over breakfast ratings to rival Sunrise, and it’s believed this push to add more of a ‘right view’ to the show is a desperate attempt to claw back some of those numbers.

The ploy worked last week, for example, when Pauline appeared on Today alongside Steve Price, and made headlines with her comparison between the Uluru climbing ban and closing down Bondi Beach.

Pauline Hanson made an appearance on Today last week and made headlines. Photo: Channel Nine

Controversial Queensland senator Bob Katter appeared on the same program, and the network is also reportedly in talks with another politician about a permanent slot - Tasmanian senator Jacqui Lambie.

Today show’s new faces

The new additions come after the Today show cast was overhauled following a string of offscreen controversies in December last year.

The new line-up of the Today show debuted in January. Photo: Channel Nine

The program’s radical casting switch-up saw Tom Steinfort take over from Sylvia Jeffreys as newsreader, while Deb Knight stepped into Karl’s hosting shoes and Brooke Boney joined as entertainment reporter.

While Karl’s younger brother Peter also left the network and nabbed his ‘dream job’ fronting Sky News’ breakfast show, First Edition, his wife remains one of Nine’s most popular presenters after landing a new gig reporting for A Current Affair.

Low ratings

The show experienced its “lowest ratings in 10 years” after the first week of the new line-up, The Daily Telegraph reported at the time.

During the premiere with the post-Stefanovic Today panel in January, many viewers were less than impressed.

“I’m not watching now Karl’s gone,” one fan wrote on Instagram. “He brightened up my mornings”.

“Tried to watch, cant do it. I’ll watch 7 instead now. Good luck guys (sic),” another said.

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