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With Rosie O'Donnell gone from The View, the majority of her days since her abrupt, contentious departure spent dictating angry haikus to an assistant while suspended in her upside-down depression-therapy rig, ABC has been quietly auditioning potential replacements. According to Star Magazine, they have settled on former Patrick-Swayze-channeling conduit Whoopi Goldberg:

"As far as everyone at ABC is concerned, she has the job," a network insider confirms to Star. "They have been meeting with Kathy Griffin, Rosanne Barr, Ricki Lake and Gayle King." While Kathy was a strong contender, Whoopi has won everyone over."

"Whoopi has a radio show, she lives in NYC and she is an institution. She also is liberal and outspoken but not crazy like Rosie was. She will be a perfect fit as far as the ladies on The View are concerned." [...]

ABC executives are so excited about signing Whoopi that they even offered her what they refused to give Rosie - a year-to-year deal. "When Rosie finds out, she'll be furious!" tattles another source.

Goldberg could prove a suitable match for Elisabeth Hasselbeck, offering sharp-tongued counterpoint to the shrill, neocon birthing vessel without resorting to name-calling or whiny claims about her own victimization. Still, there was something about Rosie's tenure of terror—perhaps the imminent threat of one of Rosie's co-hosts having the breath squeezed out of them with a clench firmer than any crocodile's jaw—that leads us to question whether the Whoopi era of The View will ever reach the same heights of chemically-imbalanced-lesbian-with-serious-anger-issues appointment television that her predecessor's did.