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Posts Tagged ‘Mark Preston’

Mark Preston Named Executive Editor of CNN Politics

CNN Washington Bureau Chief Sam Fiest announced today that Mark Preston has been named executive editor of CNN Politics. Preston has served as CNN’s political director since 2011.

In this role, Preston will continue to cover campaigns, polling, and political events, as well as lead network coverage of political events including the debates.

“Mark’s new role will put CNN in a terrific position heading into the mid-term elections and beyond,” said Feist in a network release. “Mark’s relationships in the political world are among the strongest in journalism and we look forward to Mark leveraging these connections as he organizes events and reports on the upcoming campaign.”

Preston joined CNN as political editor in 2005 and prior to that, was a senior staff writer at Roll Call.


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Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day

“News helicopters being told to back off because HWY Patrol can’t hear people crying for help #tornado #oklahoma”Robin Marsh, news anchor in Oklahoma City.

Fallout: Bring Up Politics at Your Own Risk 

“I’m a douche low-life scumbag jackhole ghoul for noting Coburn already wants offsets to fed aid and Inhofe is climate change denier.” – Politico‘s Glenn Thrush, who got bombarded when he wrote this: “It’s striking that OK’s sens are 1) a federal spending skeptic and 2) global warming denier.” In response to the above, Kristina Ribali, director of new media at Freedom Works remarked: “@GlennThrush I didn’t say you were slamming them, I said you were being an ass. Have some class.” Labor reporter F. Bill McMorris wrote simply, “#douche.”

Did someone speak too soon? 

“Thank God tragedies like this one in OK bring out the highest and best in everyone – politicians, first responders, government, media.” — CNBC and NYT‘s John Harwood.

More media in-fighting…

The Nation‘s Katrina vanden Heuvel: “If GOP going to use IRS ‘scandal’ to demolish government,they may wish to look at need for very same government in Oklahoma tornado disaster.”

National Review Online‘s Jonah Goldberg: “.@KatrinaNation what’s really in poor taste how your point is so pedestrian and lame. Why bother? Jeez.”

The Day After: “It is always the next day when the sun comes up that we learn the extent of the horror.” — Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren.

And a few confessionals…

“Sometimes the disaster voyeurism on Twitter makes me uncomfortable.” — Blake Hounshel, managing editor of Foreign Policy mag.

“I lost some family that meant a lot to me in the AL tornadoes. Think I’ll clock out of coverage for the evening and pick it up in the AM.” — FBDC Contributor and Bill Press‘ producer Peter Ogburn.

“The partisanship in the wake of tragedy stuns me.” — WaPo‘s Chris Cillizza.

The Preacher

“When you turn your TV off and stop tweeting tonight — stop. Sit in peace. Too many people don’t have that tonight.” — WaPo producer Jeff Simon.

Emotions on high: A Variety of Calls for Prayer

  • “Terrifying photo of tornado damage May the dead rest in peace. May survivors get help to heal and rebuild.” – Conor Friedersdorf, staff writer for The Atlantic.

“Worst part about Oklahoma news is you know it’s going to get worse. And that’s just heartbreaking. #PrayForOklahoma” — Rory Cooper, communications director to House Maj. Leader Eric Cantor.

  • “The sad news from Oklahoma keeps rolling in. Everyone at TheDC is thinking of the folks affected, & will keep you in our thoughts & prayers.” — The Daily Caller.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone in Oklahoma tonight. #okc” — Newt Gingrich.

Uh oh.

“CIA source says Fox News scandal the ’4th Shoe’; says it goes much deeper; says WH also sitting on “something” that has top aides terrified.” — Drudge Report and TWT Columnist Joseph Curl.

GOP Spox Prediction: 60 Minutes to land first Obama interview

“White House/Obama scandal tsunami is growing. Odds that the White House offers Steve Kroft the first POTUS interview?” — NRSC Strategist/Spokesman Brad Dayspring in an unfortunate display of using a weather analogy on the wrong day.

Rubin Vs. Shuster

“Watching lefty media meltdown re Obama media spying is like a kid finding out Babe Ruth was a drunk. Sorry to disillusion but long overdue.” — WaPo‘s
“Right Turn” blogger Jennifer Rubin.

Shuster guts Rubin like a fish“When it comes to RWNJ’s, including @JRubinBlogger, who are mentally ill + psychotic, best to ignore them.” — Lefty radio host David Shuster. “[Jennifer Rubin] proves again she is a habitual liar. And, asking @CNN to cut the mic of somebody responding to her lies? Psychotic.”

Bureau Chief takes firm stance on exposed pits

“Phew, getting people blind drunk in bars in order to get them to tell you things isn’t in DOJ’s list of treasonous acts that reporters do.” — BuzzFeed Washington Bureau Chief John Stanton. And this from a few days ago, but we couldn’t resist it: “I’m a firm believer that sleeves are mandatory for dudes in a restaurant situation. Nobody wants your pits exposed near their food.”

Watch out, ladies, your purses are germier than you think

“Not the dinner hour yet so if you carry a purse tune in at 4. Report shows more germs on your purse than a toilet. News4 @nbcwashington.” — Jim Handly, anchor, NBC Washington.

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Best of Newt’s Long Goodbye

Washington journalists fixated on Newt Gingrich‘s speech marking the end of his presidential campaign Wednesday afternoon. Here’s what caught our eye.

The Daily Beast‘s Robin Givhan: “Newt Gingrich: the long goodbye as pompous lecture.”

Politico’s Glenn Thrush: “This reminds me of that scene in Airplane where this guys keeps talking and all his seat mates start committing suicide.”

Politico‘s Reid Epstein: “Just fyi, the Gettysburg Address was 271 words.”

CNN’s Mark Preston: “Newt Gingrich just suspended his presidential campaign and now he is talking about his moon colony proposal.”

ReutersSam Youngman: “Somewhere Romney is saying, ok, that’s enough, Newt.”

Politico‘s Darren Goode: “I’m now officially drunk. #drinkinggame #Newt”

WaPo‘s Chris Cillizza: “Newt is, gulp, likable in this press conference. No?”

CNN’s Jaconi and Preston Give Good ‘Gut Check’

Playbook, HuffPost Hill, and RCP, take note:  a new daily email newser is creeping into your space as well as the inboxes of Washington’s top wonks and influencers.

Over the past few weeks, veteran producer Michelle Jaconi and CNN Political Director Mark Preston have quietly begun circulating their 5 p.m. “Gut Check” to colleagues, deal makers and choice recipients at the White House and on Capitol Hill.  Defined as “a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle,” Gut Check appears to be the evening answer to Politico Mike Allen’s morning distribution. Preston and Jaconi’s pub provides politicos and the people who love them, a two-minute analysis of the day in politics, a rundown of stories leading competitive websites, top tweets, monumental moments from the campaign trail, breaking news and other tasty tidbits to satisfy the Beltway’s inquiring minds.

FishbowlDC hears an automated signup form for CNN’s Gut Check is in the works but early adopters have to request an ‘add’ the old fashioned way – by emailing or checking it out each evening on CNN’s political ticker blog.

CNN Announces Shifts for Two Longtime Journos

As we move in to 2012, CNN’s Washington Bureau Chief Sam Feist announces new positions for two “key leaders” of CNN Politics.

Mark Preston becomes CNN Political Director.  In this role, a release states, “Mark will be CNN’s primary contact with political campaigns at both the state and national level. His work is integral to organizing critical CNN events such as presidential debates and forums.  He will help set editorial direction for CNN’s programs during the election season, including primary and election nights. Mark is also one of the great political reporters in Washington and we will continue to lean on Mark’s reporting and analysis both on TV and online throughout the coming campaign.  Mark will report to Eric Sherling.”

Paul Steinhauser, meanwhile, becomes CNN Political Editor and supervising producer of the CNN Political Unit.  “He will be responsible for overseeing CNN’s political newsgathering operations. As the leader of the political beat, Paul will be responsible for assigning and managing CNN’s political coverage team including correspondents, producers, desk editors, polling, research, and the CNN Political Ticker. Paul’s proven leadership and keen political analysis will be invaluable as CNN heads into this historic election year. Paul and the Political Unit will report to Edith Chapin.”

Good Morning FishbowlDC Readers

Quotes of the Day

Coincidence? We think not. Last night FishbowlMatt and I were texting about a variety of hot topics when he entered the Chipotle and saw this.

Deep Thoughts…

“Sun. Grass. Newspapers. People. A family of teeny mice tiptoe through the shrubs in their own private world. #sittingstill #whatching” — National Geographic Contributing Editor Carl Hoffman.

Luke and Maureen off to see Bruce

“On my way to see Springsteen with Luke. Wrote Newsweek cover story on Bruce exactly 36 years ago this coming week.” — Vanity Fair Correspondent Maureen Orth. (The late Tim Russert‘s favorite musician was Springsteen. The musician gave a surprise performance at Russert’s memorial service in 2008.)

The Political Consultant

“Sen. @DavidVitter uses Twitter to congratulate individual Republicans for winning in Saturday’s La. Election #notnecessary” — CNN Senior Political Editor Mark Preston.


“Mechanic told me today my car failed inspection. He had a look of disappointment as I tried to explain what happened #highschoolflashbacks” — The Hill‘s Managing Editor Bob Cusack.

TWT Senior Op-ed Writer Emily Miller‘s reaction to ex-Gov. Mark Sanford being hired by Fox News: “WTF?”


“I’m so tempted to ad-lib but I won’t.” — TIME‘s Mark Halperin on this morning’s “Morning Joe.” After calling President Obama “kind of a dick” on national TV we’d think Halperin wouldn’t even think about ad-libbing. This involved a reenactment of Texas Gov. Rick Perry‘s interview to Parade Magazine. Willie Geist played Perry. Halperin played the interviewer.

Happy 24th wedding anniversary to WaPo‘s Karen Tumulty.

ABC’s Klein welcomes baby into world

“A warm welcome to Max Rubin Klein (9lb 8oz!). Future slugger? Congrats to parents Laine and @rickklein and big brother Jack.” — ABC’s Jonathan Karl.

Reminder: TMZ’s Harvey Levin talks to GWU students and then he’s off to the National Press Club for lunch.

If you’re up…

Call Trail Mix blogger Craig Crawford on C-SPAN starting at 7:45 a.m.

Democrats: (202) 737-0001
Republicans: (202) 737-0002
Independents: (202) 628-0205
Outside U.S.: (202) 628-0184

Good Morning FishbowlDC Readers

QUOTES of the DAYHoliday Weekend Edition

CNN Senior Political Editor Mark Preston: “Just watched 13 and counting fishing boats leave #Hatteras aboard ferry from #Ocracoke.”

Liquid weekend

“Margarita. Sun. Water. Stir. Serve.”– LAT and Chicago Tribune writer James Oliphant in a weekend tweet.

The judge has spoken: Nir Rosen

“How sad to call yourself a journalist and cover a royal wedding.” — Lefty journo Nir Rosen in a weekend tweet. This stellar critique coming from a man who, back in February, promised to get off Twitter after he made admittedly tasteless remarks about CBS’s Lara Logan being sexually assaulted in Egypt. Among other things he wrote, “It would have been funny if it happened to Anderson [Cooper] too.” How soon Rosen forgets saying, “I feel like shrinking now.” What’s he have against royal wedding coverage?

Ezra marvels at Britney’s career trajectory

“Sort of amazed that Britney Spears is still around and making hits. Has anyone done a great ‘Britney Spears: Survivor’ profile?” — WaPo‘s liberal blogger Ezra Klein in a weekend tweet. He then links to an article by the esteemed TV host Carson Daly, who cries about how sad he is that Britney is “crawling back into the womb” of the record industry. Daly’s show, “Last Call,” airs at 1:35 a.m. ET. First Ez expresses that he loves “Ice Loves Coco,” now this. Whatever metamorphosis is happening, we’re just relieved Klein has expanded his reading repertoire from CJR.

Journo has Metro rage

“Hate the DC Metro and I hate it so much I want to strangle it with my bare hands and destroy its evilness. #metrorage #primalscream.” — Roll Call‘s HOH writer Neda Semnani in a weekend tweet.

It was a long and stormy morning…

“#Boom, thought it was an earthquake in DC … Turned on TV …. Not yet? Just thunder/lightning … Ok. Back to bed.” — Human EventsTony Lee in a weekend tweet.

“Was sleeping soundly until this Wrath of God weather came along & woke me. Yes, I think we need the rain, but at 5:45am on Sunday?!?” — C-SPAN’s Jeremy Art in a weekend tweet.

“Either they’re rehearsing the Fourth of July show on the Mall right now, or our independence is nearly over. #Invasion #Explosives” — WCP‘s Mike Madden in a weekend tweet.

Reporter has new pet peeve

“New airline annoyance: people who play computer solitaire with you over your shoulder.” — WaPo‘s Karen Tumulty in a weekend tweet.

Reporter declares nation sexy

“Happy Birthday America. You are still very sexy for a 235 year old.” — TWT‘s Eli Lake in a 4th of July tweet.

Sweating with Roland

“The thing I hate about the end of the Essence Music Fest is packing wet linen. I partied/sweated hard! #emf2011″ — Washington Watch Host Roland Martin in a weekend tweet.

Inskeep gets down with Prince

“Riding taxi through dark while radio plays ‘Kiss’ by Prince makes you feel you’re in a movie w/soundtrack.” — NPR’s Steve Inskeep in a Tuesday morning tweet.

Rough weekend

“Long weekend+3 power outages=kids bouncing off walls.” — NBC’s Chuck Todd in a weekend tweet.

The Observer

“After watching the “Page One” doc, here’s what I noticed: David Carr – a NY Times reporter – wore a Washington City Paper hat. #wemajor” — WCP Music Critic Marcus Moore in a weekend tweet.

The Critic

“You know it’s a bad day for news when half of @mikeallen‘s Playbook is Jon Huntsman news.” — Mediaite‘s Frances Martel in a weekend tweet.

Strange coincidence?

“Well, that was a first. Woman behind the desk at my gym: ”Pethokoukis?’ Is that an Indian name?’ Namaste!” — Reuters’ Politics and Policy writer Jim Pethokoukis in a weekend tweet. He goes on to say, “Also weird: yesterday I went to an Indian restaurant for the first time in my life.” Pethokoukis is Greek.

Forget Humans in D.C., Just Dogs (Part V)

Dear FishbowlDC Readers,

Yesterday we claimed that Thursday was the end of DogBowl 2010. But we lied. After the stampede of pictures that we received yesterday, today will be the final day. To answer Roll Call‘s Christina Bellantoni‘s tweet request to run a similar feline contest, the answer has to be simply: No way.  This runs a dangerous slippery slope to birds, pet snakes, gerbils (ick) and so forth. The ferret was a major exception. Yes, we know Politico‘s Patrick Gavin might be into it, but cats have no place in the expression, “If you want a friend in Washington get a…” cat? Just sounds off. Please don’t sic your Cat Fancy Magazine friends on us, either of you. In the meantime, to everyone, enjoy your last day of precious pooches. Next week we’ll award those who caught our eye. And angry Alvin (owned by the Washington Examiner‘s freelance film writer Andy White) you’ve been warned, you’re already in the doghouse. No lobbying will improve your chances unless your behavior improves.


FishbowlDC Management

We start the day with 6-year-old Neepa from Maryland Patch reporter Amy Kovac-Ashley. The owner writes, “In addition to sitting and staying, she also lies down on command and shakes hands. She’s just basically more awesome than everyone else’s dog. And I’m not biased. I’m a journalist.” Meet Neepa.

> Update #1: “This is Zimm, a Beagle who is just shy of 5 months old and the most popular dog (or person) in my apartment building. He may be the first dog to be named after a Washington Nationals player—Ryan Zimmerman.”  The owner: Lauren Pick, Associate Producer, FNC D.C. Bureau of “Special Report with Bret Baier.”

> Update #2: Reader Joe Hainline (among other things he’s a wedding singer) submits Calvert, whom he says is “hands down the cutest dog in Washington.” Calvert (named after the bridge) is a 2 1/2-year-old Shih Tzu mix of some sort.

> Update #3: Emily the Beagle belongs to Lauren Tate of FNC’s D.C. Bureau. Tate explains, “She was originally dropped off at a shelter somewhere in Ohio having just given birth to a litter of puppies.  Both she and her puppies were abandoned at the shelter.” Emily was saved one day before she was scheduled to be put down.

> Update #4: Nipper is getting antsy. So here she is. Owner is Fran Murphy, a freelance producer for WJLA, Pentagon Channel and WDCW among others.

> Update #5: Bloomberg‘s Lisa Lerer says Athena is “so cute” and also claims the dog high fives. And actually, the photograph below appears to prove as much.

> Update #6: This is Duffy, TBD‘s Steve Buttry‘s (and Mimi Johnson‘s) toy Schnauzer puppy. Mimi writes in, “He’s just 14 weeks old. Currently his main interest include chewing, learning to sit and how to indicate when he needs to go outside. He also harbors a deep and unrequited love for Buttry’s smelly bedroom slippers.”

> Update #7: Say hello to Dishwasher Dog. Real name: Piper. “In addition to helping us do the dishes, Piper has very expensive taste in the shoes she likes to chew.  She can usually be found tiring out other dogs at the S Street Dog Park.” Owners: David and Haley Meadvin: Hayley is press sec. for the U.S. Small Business Administration; David is Prez of Inkwell Strategies, a DC-based speechwriting and communications firm.

> Update #8: CNN’s Mark Preston: “I can’t think of a better way than closing out the week than hanging out with a Guinness…Guinness Preston, of course. Check out the frothy paws.”

> Update # 9: Apparently Winston (who can speak) asked if his owner, Jeffrey Donald, would send his picture in.  Donald writes, “I told him that even though I am a former flack for the House Science Committee and at the Department of Commerce, I wasn’t sure that my current flacking gig at Bethesda’s USEC Inc. met the high standards of this contest. This picture (“Sad Winston”) was his reaction. He grumbled something about staging a write-in candidacy.”

> Update #10: This is Jinx, WAMU’s Patrick Madden‘s new puppy.

> Update #11: Go ahead and delete the other entries, says RNC Director Dave Welch. “Chipper was adopted out of a high kill shelter in West Virginia after he was abandoned by some Disney-like villain.  Chipper has thrived in DC and even dominated snowpocalypse.”

> Update #12: Meet Cali. She belongs to Rebecca Rudman, Comm Director to Rep. Ken Calvert. Rudman writes, “As you can see in the picture, she is hard at work on my desk (which is always a mess)!”

> Update #13: Say hello to Dexter, a Jack Russell Terrier belonging to WTOP reporter Kristi King and editor Randy Lilleston . No picture. Watch the video.

> Update #14: Beagles Fred and Hank are at the arch in St. Louis. Owners: Photographer Joan Brady and husband, Jim, former GM of TBD.

Good Morning FishbowlDC Readers

Quote(s) of the Day


Patriotism with a flare

“The national anthem is not about who sings it. Pisses me off. Just sing the damn song.” –The Weekly Standard‘s Stephen Hayes in a Thursday tweet. (And who doesn’t love being angrily ordered to sing the anthem?)

A slice of WH journo life

“Egocentric, eccentric Lester Kinsolving greets Biden with applause, fights with Ann Compton, who tells him shuddup.”
Politico’s White House correspondent Glenn Thrush in a Thursday tweet.

TV editor enjoys frozen nougat candybar

“I just had a frozen Charleston Chew, but it wasn’t cold.”
–CNN’s senior political editor Mark Preston in a Thursday tweet that is encouragingly non-wonky.

Freddoso Disses Matthews

“Tea Party documentary: When was the last time Chris Matthews did anything worthwhile?” (His story, here, discusses what he calls Matthews’s shoddy journalism.) –Washington Examiner‘s David Freddoso tweets Thursday on MSNBC’s Matthews, who hosted a documentary show earlier this week.


It’s Election Night: Where’s CNN?


It’s 11:13 p.m. Tuesday night. There are a slew of political primaries taking place around the country.

And where is CNN?

Slate‘s chief political correspondent and CBS contributor John Dickerson said on Twitter: “On CNN it’s like there aren’t elections tongiht.” And Politics Daily Columnist and Mother Jones Bureau Chief David Corn remarked: “CNN, I like Ed Markey, but would rather hear Blanche Lincoln now. You’re the Best…what on TV?”

CNN’s absence perplexed D.C. journalists late Tuesday night. As elections results were rolling in, CNN’s Anderson Cooper was interviewing Rep. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) on the situation in the Gulf with an oil plume in the background. Meanwhile, FNC and MSNBC were fixated on the elections throughout the evening with special live coverage. FNC had anchor Bret Baier at the helm. MSNBC had special late night appearances by hosts Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow and Chris Matthews. Maddows went live at 11 p.m.; Matthews appeared live at midnight.

Also at midnight, CNN’s Wolf Blitzer did a special “Larry King Live” program on election results already covered by the other networks.

CNN staff covered the elections online during those hours, just not on air. From Blitzer: “I’m getting ready to anchor a one-hour special Larry King Live at midnight ET on all the election results. Get ready!” he tweeted.

Mark Preston, CNN’s newly promoted senior political editor, was on top of the results. “Meg Whitman wins in Calif. and faces Jerry Brown in November in the battle to succeed Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger,” he said on Twitter. And Sam Feist, CNN’s V.P. of D.C.-based programming, remarked around the same time as Preston, tweeting, “Looks like Whitman and Fiorina headed for big victories in California GOP primaries. Full results:”

CNN’s decision on Wednesday political and oil spill coverage was strategic.

From a CNN Spokesperson: “Not only do we cover politics, we’re committed to the oil spill disaster which has affected so many lives. Anderson’s program last night included interviews with survivors from the oil rig explosion. That’s an important story. In addition, during the 10p and 11p (ET) hours CNN had live election updates from Wolf Blitzer. He also hosted an hour-long live special at midnight (ET) as west coast results were coming in.”

> Update: For a clip of Cooper’s program Tuesday night with interviews of survivors of the oil spill, watch here.