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MSNBC Host Alex Wagner Marries Sam Kass, With Obama Family Attending

KassWagnerMSNBC daytime host Alex Wagner married Sam Kass Saturday in the hamlet of Pocantico Hills, north of New York City. Kass is the personal chef for the Obama family and executive director of the “Let’s Move” campaign. The Obama family was in attendance. From the AP report:

Obama wore a dark suit, and Mrs. Obama and their daughters each wore sleeveless black dresses. The first family spent about six hours at the wedding. Obama had no known role, other than to give his best to the bride and groom.

The union of Kass, 34, and Wagner, 36, also served to highlight what some contend is too much togetherness between the media and the people they report on. Naturally, the guest list was expected to include staff from both the White House and the liberal-leaning cable news outlet, with people from both sides breaking bread at the same dinner table.

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It Took Four People to Produce This Labor Day Cable News Special

Screen Shot 2014-08-31 at 10.47.17 AMIn what may be the least labor-intensive Labor Day special, Greta Van Susteren travels to Alaska with wounded veterans and their spouses as a part of Operation Heal Our Patriots.

It’s not that those who worked on it didn’t do a lot of work, it’s because it took just four people to put together the one-hour special airing tonight at 7pmET. Van Susteren and Griff Jenkins shot the entire special — there are no two-camera shoots, no special lighting, just two reporters with hand-held cameras. Van Susteren and Jenkins then brought their camera cards back to Fox News, handed them to one producer and one editor, and from that work, got their special. We’re told the editor was able to cover up the shakey camera work.

The special was shot over the July 4th weekend in conjunction with Samaritan’s Purse which helps military couples reconnect and strengthen their relationships after overseas deployments. Some of these couples share their stories with Van Susteren in the Alaskan wilderness.

Who Is Chuck Todd Anyway?

This morning, “Meet the Press” introduced viewers to Chuck Todd, with reflections from his mother, his wife, Tom Brokaw from Montana and Brian Williams at the Jersey Shore. Todd and substitute host Andrea Mitchell discussed the legacy of the show and the coverage of politics today. Todd then got the signature last word, “If it’s Sunday. It’s Meet the Press.” Todd takes over as host next Sunday.

Arwa Damon Returns to Reporting for CNN

After nearly a month away, Arwa Damon has returned to reporting for CNN. The network’s senior international correspondent found herself in the news earlier this month when she was sued by two EMTs in Baghdad who claimed she bit them “in a drunken rage” at the U.S. Embassy.

“I am apologizing and extending my thanks to all that were involved in ensuring that I am, thankfully, in the end, taken care of and physically at least OK,” Damon wrote in an email following the incident. “Everyone was extremely professional and courteous in the face of my unjustified behavior.”

For her first on-air story, Damon reported from a morgue in Baghdad.

The Sunday Ticker: Viva, Border, NFL

  • The “Today” show and sister network Telemundo are teaming up for “Viva TODAY.” The series, beginning tomorrow, celebrates National Hispanic Heritage month. “Viva Today” will highlight the positive impact Hispanic and Latino Americans have on society.

  • Tonight on Fusion, Mexican actor Demian Bichir follows several at-risk, low-income Hispanic students as they attempt to become the first in their family to go to college. “The Last Border” airs as part of Fusion’s “Documental” series, which airs every Sunday night at 8pmET.

  • The 2014 NFL season begins and ends on NBC. The kickoff is this Thursday when the Green Bay Packers take on the defending Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks. The season ends on NBC with Super Bowl XLIX on February 1, 2015.

Rachel Maddow on Ferguson: ‘It Doesn’t Make Sense’

Like her MSNBC colleagues, Rachel Maddow has covered the shooting of Michael Brown and subsequent protests in Ferguson extensively. Earlier this week, she told David Letterman her thoughts on the story.

“It doesn’t make any sense,” Maddow said regarding the militarization of the police force many have cited when talking about Ferguson. “Even small town police departments have mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicles that were developed for use in Kandahar.”

Ice Bucket Challenges You May Have Missed: Doocy Sings Kenny, Foreman Goes Psycho

On this Labor Day weekend, allow us to share a couple ice bucket challenges you may have missed, including “Fox & Friends” co-host Steve Doocy who got doused while singing Kenny Rogers‘ hit “The Gambler.” Doocy, who was challenged by Rogers, didn’t know when to walk away, or when to run.


The award for most creative in 37 seconds goes to CNN’s Tom Foreman, who went totally psycho for his challenge.

For reference, we started posting ice bucket drenchings 35 days ago, when Shepard Smith took up the challenge.

Aneesh Raman, from CNN to OZY

Aneesh-Headshot-239x300From covering earthquakes and war for CNN to writing  speeches for President Obama, Aneesh Raman‘s career has run the gamut.

In Mediabistro’s “So What Do You Do?” series, Raman tells us about his new gig: senior editor focusing on public relations and marketing for the daily news and culture site OZY.

You’ve had such a diverse career. How did the skills and experiences you gained from each role contribute to the next?

“The way it all makes sense to me is that in every role I have had to explain complex things simply, whether it was reporting from Iraq as the war unraveled or from Iran as the nuclear dispute grew, whether it was speechwriting at the Treasury or at the White House about the economic situation. No matter the job, it was about taking a really complicated situation, finding the story and explaining it simply to as wide an audience as possible. So, yeah, I think if I thought back to the career path I’ve taken, that’s the one thing that seems to thread it all together.”

Read: So What Do You Do? Aneesh Raman

The Scoreboard: Thursday, August 28

25-54 demographic (Live +SD)

  • Total day: FNC: 235 | MSNBC: 84 | CNN: 144 | HLN: 106
  • Primetime: FNC: 350 | MSNBC: 137 | CNN: 163 | HLN: 106

4p: 5p: 6p: 7p: 8p: 9p: 10p: 11p: 12a:
FNC
Cavuto:

195

TheFive:

326

Baier:

336

Greta:

231

O’Reilly:

397

Kelly:

346

Hannity:

308

O’Reilly:

253

Kelly:

231

MSNBC
Wagner:

47

EdShow:

67

Sharpton:

146

Matthews:

154

Hayes:

136

Maddow:

127

O’Donnell:

147

Hayes:

71

Maddow:

71

CNN
Tapper:

172

Blitzer:

170

Blitzer:

174

Burnett:

140

Cooper:

160

Cooper:

185

Tonight:

142

Tonight:

132

CNNI:

111

HLN
Now:

68

Files:

77

Files:

65

Jane:

81

Grace:

109

Dr.Drew:

96

Files:

104

Files:

216

Files:

269

Read more

The Evening Ticker: Kelly, Stelter, Greta

  • Tonight on Fox News, Megyn Kelly hosts “The Kelly File Investigation: Justice for All in Ferguson.” The hour looks at the facts of the criminal case, the recent chaos in the Missouri town and examine how the eyewitness reports differ from the police account.
  • Following his fiery debate with Sean Hannity earlier this week, London Imam Anjem Choudary will be on CNN’s “Reliable Sources” Sunday morning to talk about how radical Islamists spread their message.
  • Tomorrow at 10pmET on Fox News, “Greta Investigates: Death at the River’s Edge.” Beginning in the 1990s, young college men were found dead in rivers across the United States. When two investigators claimed the crime scenes were tagged with graffiti, they became known as the “Smiley Face Murders” causing panic across the nation.

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