The Austin Chronicle

Rachel Maddow to Speak at SXSW Interactive

By Amy Smith, February 1, 2013, 10:12am, SXSW

MSNBC TV news host Rachel Maddow, a darling of progressive political junkies, will be a featured speaker at the South by Southwest Interactive Festival this March, organizers announced today.

An unapologetic liberal with a sharp wit, the host of The Rachel Maddow Show has been a reliable primetime ratings booster for the cable news network since the program's debut in 2008. That's the year she became a media sensation as a female cable news anchor who was smart and funny and oh, by the way, an-out-and proud lesbian. (She currently has more than 2.4 million Twitter followers.) She showed her defense chops in her book, Drift: The Unmooring of American Military Power, released, not too coincidentally, in advance of the presidential election. Like other TV show hosts, Maddow drew some of her best material from the GOP presidential primaries; not only did she give Fox News rival Sean Hannity a run for his money in the ratings department, she turned the failed campaign of "the artist formerly known as Herman Cain" into a weeknight news segment that played out as Cain's high-profile bid unraveled. It was pretty funny.

Maddow will speak Sunday, March 10, at the Austin Convention Center; see for more details.

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