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The Story With “Morning Joe”

Matthew Felling has a piece in the American Journalism Review about MSNBC’s “Morning Joe”:

    Former “Scarborough Country” host Joe Scarborough’s “Morning Joe” takes a less scripted approach to morning television than its competitors. The MSNBC program’s freewheeling format features interviews with political figures and pundits that are longer than the ones offered elsewhere; they seem more breakfast table than news desk. …

    By giving the candidates and political players a little breathing room and letting them relax, the show stands out, said C-SPAN’s Steve Scully, who hosts “Washington Journal,” a morning show competitor. In an e-mail interview, Scully said: “For those of us who love and follow politics, we want more than just a 5-7 minute segment on ‘Today,’ we want the stories behind the headlines. Next to C-SPAN, of course, ‘Morning Joe’ really does go behind the scenes, to understand the players, the political maneuvers, the backroom deals that may result in what the candidates are doing.” …

    How fun? Horseplay fun. When the on-air behavior ends up with Tim Russert on the receiving end of an unexpected Mike Barnicle headlock, it’s clear you’re watching something quite different.

Read the rest here.

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