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Will Stern replace Letterman?

If David Letterman bails on CBS, Howard Stern is poised to take his place, according to Matt Drudge.

Quoting what it described as a “top source,” the Drudge Report said Stern is “at the very top of a very short list” of potential replacements for Letterman, should the latter follow through on a rumoured plan to move his show from CBS to ABC.

Stern’s agent, Don Buchwald, is on the phone non-stop with CBS, in an attempt to hammer out a deal, Drudge reports. But given his loose-cannon reputation, Stern could be a controversial choice. The report said some network executives were against hiring the talk-radio personality.

Jon Stewart, host of Comedy Central’s “Daily Show” has also been approached about the Letterman job. Stewart had previously been tapped by CBS to replace Tom Snyder as host of his late-night talk show, but late in the game, opted for Craig Kilborn. Stewart then replaced Kilborn as host of the “Daily Show.”

Stern previously ran afoul of CBS president Les Moonves after the network dropped Stern’s Saturday night talk show, Drudge reported.