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Sherri Richards, Published June 01 2011

Ed Schultz show back in Fargo

FARGO – Ed Schultz’s radio show returns to local airwaves on the station founded by a fellow North Dakota-grown radio personality and his ideological opposite.

WFZG AM 1100 The Flag now airs Schultz’s nationally syndicated radio program from 2 to 5 p.m. weekdays. The time slot was most recently held by local conservative talk-show host Scott Hennen, who founded The Flag.

Schultz will also discuss local issues as a regular guest on “Bruce Kelly and Company,” which airs from 5 to 8 a.m. on The Flag, which Schultz described Tuesday as his “flagship station now.”

“I’m still very connected to the area,” Schultz said Tuesday. “I miss some of the local issues.”

Kelly said the addition of Schultz allows both political sides to be discussed on the station.

“This is a great move for The Flag,” Breck Von Bank, vice president of sales and operations, said in a news release. “It provides political balance for our listeners.”

The announcement was made at 7:30 a.m. on The Flag. Schultz came to The Flag’s downtown Fargo studio for a 2 p.m. news conference after recording his national show at his local studio. He normally records that program in New York City.

Last week, Schultz agreed to a one-week suspension from his MSNBC news cable show for using a derogatory slur about conservative radio personality Laura Ingraham. “It was a serious mistake. I’ve dealt with it. Life goes on,” Schultz said Tuesday.

Tuesday was also the first day Hennen’s program began airing from 2 to 5 p.m. on KNOX 1310 in Grand Forks.

Hennen said Tuesday he now also syndicates the program, still based out of Fargo, to the Tioga and Williston, N.D., area, and is in conversations with Fargo and Bismarck media entities. He eventually hopes to expand syndication across North and South Dakota and Minnesota, something he said he couldn’t do contractually when the show was on The Flag.

The addition of Schultz’s show wasn’t a surprise to Hennen. He said it fits the direction that the station’s management has taken since Hennen was removed from leadership of the station in September. His program returned to The Flag weeks later, but was removed mid-broadcast on May 23.

“I wish them well,” Hennen said. “I like to see radio succeed and have nothing but good wishes for Ed and my former colleagues at The Flag.

“The question is do oil and water mix? They didn’t when KFGO tried it. The Flag is going to give that another shot and see if it works,” Hennen said.

Schultz also pointed out Tuesday that when he was on 790 AM, he aired back-to-back with national conservative host Rush Limbaugh, and said the station had great success with that combination.

“I think it’s a crazy business. Who would have ever thought I would have gotten the opportunity in New York that I’ve gotten? Who would have ever thought I would be on this radio station? Crazy things happen in this business,” Schultz said.


Readers can reach Forum reporter Sherri Richards at (701) 241-5556