Now that Larry King has announced that he will end Larry King Live this fall, the CNN veteran journalist is gunning hardcore for his buddy Ryan Seacrest to take over the talk show ... telling us, "I hope he does."

When it comes to Ryan handling the job's political duties, Larry admits to X17online exclusively:

    "In all the years I've known him, I'm not sure how much interest he has in politics. You can't do that show without being a political junkie. If he has that, he'd be terrific."

Larry didn't have anything to say about Katie Couric joining the network...despite reports claiming she's still considering the spot.

As for Ryan, we have to admit ... Ryan Seacrest Live sounds pretty good!