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Goldberg, Shepherd Candidates for 'View'

by David Bauder

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Current ladies of 'The View' include: (L-R) Barbara Walters, Joy

Behar and Elisabeth Hasselbeck

NEW YORK CITY, New York -- ABC's daytime show "The View" appears close to adding Whoopi Goldberg and Sherri Shepherd as regular cast members following a year with more plot twists than a soap opera.

The two women were in final negotiations to join the show, the Los Angeles Times reported Friday. While characterizing the report as premature, an executive close to the show who spoke on condition of anonymity because negotiations were ongoing wouldn't deny they were the top candidates.

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Whoopi Goldberg

Goldberg, 51, would give "The View" creator Barbara Walters a big name to replace Rosie O'Donnell. In less than a year on the show, the brash O'Donnell was a never-ending source of headlines for her feuds with Donald Trump and co-star Elisabeth Hasselbeck. Despite the near-constant need for damage control, ratings shot up.

Goldberg is one of the few performers to earn Emmy, Grammy, Tony and Academy awards in her versatile career, and could be expected to take the moderator role filled by O'Donnell. Shepherd, 40, has been a guest host on "The View" more than a dozen times, five times this month alone

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Elle -- how true, how true . . . however, Joy Behar is Italian by birth. Her given name is Josephina Victoria Occhiuto. Her ex-husband, Joe Behar, is Jewish as well as her current longtime partner since 1982, Steven Janowitz.
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Ausiello Report

Finally: The View Hires Sherri Shepherd

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Sherri Shepherd

It's official . . . well, almost: Multiple sources are now confirming that Barbara Walters will announce on Monday, September 10 that ex-"Less Than Perfect" funny lady Sherri Shepherd has at last been given Star Jones Reynolds' old seat. (Or at least as much of it as she needs.)

So now that the ink has begun to dry, or at least theoretically, Shepherd has picked up a pen with which to sign her contract, what are your thoughts? Will she -- could anyone ever -- make the show as exciting and unpredictable as it was when Rosie O'Donnell and Hasselbeck turned it into a verbal version of "WWF SmackDown"?

At this point, will you just be glad to watch a nice, normal talk show again? Would you have preferred that Kathy Griffin (the reported runner-up) have gotten the gig? Don't be shy -- share with the class.

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Baby News

Elisabeth Hasselbeck 'Views' A Son

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Tim and Elisabeth Hasselbeck

"The View" Co-Host Elisabeth Hasselbeck, 30, and Arizona Cardinals Player Tim Hasselbeck, 29, welcomed their second child, a son, on the morning of Friday, November 9, at an Arizona hospital, the network announced Saturday. The bouncing baby boy weighed in at 7 pounds, 15 ounces.

Their baby arrived two days before his due date without complications for the child or the television host. The Hasselbecks did not release the name of their new son in the birth announcement. Instead, his name will be shared during Monday's "The View" in a phone call to her fellow co-hosts.

"Elisabeth and I are happy to announce the arrival of our son and we're thrill he arrived safely," Elisabeth's NFL quarterback husband, said in a statement. "Both mom and son are happy and healthy."

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Elisabeth Hasselbeck

The new baby joins big sister, Grace Elisabeth, 2-1/2. The couple had been open about their secondary infertility, finally announcing that they were expecting again in April. They kept the sex a delivery surprise.

Elisabeth Hasselbeck, known as the most conservative voice on the show's panel, bid farewell to her co-hosts on October 23 to begin a two-and-a-half month maternity leave. Hasselbeck originally was scheduled to take maternity leave on November 9, but left instead at the end of October. Hasselbeck announced her pregnancy on the show in April.

"It was not easy to leave my co-hosts and our crew early," Elisabeth Hasselbeck wrote in an e-mail earlier this week, "but it was more than clear to me that I want my family to be under the same roof when our baby arrived."

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Rosie O'Donnell and Elisabeth Hasselbeck face off

The former "Survivor" Contestant became a 'View' staple after she won a nationwide search in 2003 for a co-host to replace Lisa Ling. Her conservative viewpoints often placed her at odds with her former co-host Rosie O'Donnell during the comedienne's one-year stint on the show last season. The debates between the two became must-see television.

Their most heated argument culminated in a split-screen view of Hasselbeck and O'Donnell arguing about the war on terror in May 2007. During the confrontation, O'Donnell accused Hasselbeck of not defending her more forcefully against conservative commentators. The verbal sparring nearly brought Hasselbeck to tears on-air and hastened O'Donnell's show exit.

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