Oops! Did Simon Cowell Really Just Say He Helped Piers Morgan Land A Gig At CNN?

piers morganPiers Morgan.

So remember how a few days ago CNN president Jon Klein told Broadcasting & Cable’s Marisa Guthrie, “We never have negotiated with Piers” Morgan, the former British tabloid journalist and “America’s Got Talent Judge” who’s been rumoured to be in talks with the network to replace Larry King or another anchor?Well, it looks like “American Idol” judge and Piers Morgan pal Simon Cowell may have just blown  Klein’s cover.

In a July 1 interview with Extra, Cowell said flat out that he helped Morgan land a gig at CNN. (Tip of the hat to Mediaite.)

“[Morgan] was under contract to us on ‘America’s Got Talent,’ so he called me and we helped sort of broker the deal,” Cowell said. “I knew about this weeks ago.”

CNN hasn’t been doing so well in the squelching-rumours department. They tried to make it seem like everything was all good with Larry King, and look how that turned out. And despite Anderson Cooper’s denial of The Wrap’s recent report that he wants to leave the network, the publication says “we stand by our reporting.”

As for Klein’s denial about Morgan, Inside Cable News pokes a few holes in his statement:

Klein didn’t just disavow all the rumours. He only disavowed the rumours pertaining to CNN negotiating with Piers Morgan. That still leaves alive the rumours that CNN was talking with Morgan and that CNN wanted to know if Morgan would like to have the 6pm slot. All three could be true. CNN could have even offered the slot to Morgan but they hadn’t gotten around to negotiating yet. Still too much wiggle room here in Klein’s answer and I’m not at all surprised that Klein didn’t respond to Guthrie’s follow up questions.

Every time this network tries to bury the Piers Morgan story, the more legitimacy it ends up giving to it.

UPDATE – A CNN spokesperson tells TVNewser: “We have not offered Piers Morgan a job, and we are not currently in negotiations with him. We are always open to new opportunities and to various talent who express an interest in our programming. Piers is one such talent, but there is no deal.”

Watch the video of Simon Cowell below:

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