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Kelly Ripa: “I Didn’t Just Not Show Up” to “Live”

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ABC/Randy Holmes(NEW YORK) — Much has been written about Michael Strahan’s impending departure from Live with Kelly and Michael. Now his co-host, Kelly Ripa, is sharing her perspective with People magazine.

Ripa was absent from the show for a few days after it was announced last month that Strahan was leaving the show for a full-time role on ABC’s Good Morning America. “I think what people need to understand about the entire situation is that I didn’t just not show up,” she tells People.

“I said, in the room, ‘I am going to take the day off.’ I needed to actually sit and gather information. I needed to make sure I said the appropriate things on TV and didn’t just come out and say whatever.”

The issue, Ripa says, was that she wasn’t given much of a heads-up before the announcement was made. She says: “We’re excited for Michael. He wanted that job, and it’s great for him. I think it is a really perfect match, I really do. However, what nobody considered is there’s a whole other group of people that it really impacts, because we have to now find another great person…when you don’t feel like you’re part of the group responsible for making decisions about that, it makes not just me feel bad, it makes all of us feel bad.”

Though Strahan was initially expected to remain with Live until September, his final day was changed to this coming Friday, thanks in part to Ripa.

“What we’ve explained to them is, well, if you had asked us, we would have told you, ‘Guys, we need to start looking, because we have summer hiatus, we have vacation time. We need to find people,” she recalls.

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