Here's a Clue
Excitable Andrew, quoting a Newsweek piece
Maddow's partner, artist Susan Mikula, believes the "unlikely" label is just code for lesbian: "She goes from Stanford to Oxford to activism to radio, then TV? What's so unusual about that? Is it because she is a gay lady?"
Yes, because it is so unusual for lesbian women to host talk shows. Ellen Degeneres, Rosie O'Donnell and now Rachel Maddow.
What's really unusual is how far left Maddow is; that's the "unlikely" part of the story, not that she's gay. Rosie's a liberal but Rachel's a flaming leftist.