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Karen Finney’s ‘Disrupt’ Cancelled

KarenFinney6First on TVNewser: “Disrupt with Karen Finney” won’t be celebrating its one-year birthday this weekend, as the 4pmET weekend show has been cancelled.

“Disrupt with Karen Finney” has ended its year-long run on MSNBC weekends,” an MSNBC spokesperson tells TVNewser. “Our thanks to Karen and her team for their great work. Finney will remain with MSNBC as a contributor.”

As we reported last year, the show’s ratings never caught on. Last November, “Disrupt” posted an A25-54 demo of just 14,000 viewers for one of its Sunday airings, and since then, has regularly finished fourth in its timeslot in both total and demo viewers.

Pres. Obama Accepts VA Secretary Eric Shinseki’s Resignation

Broadcast networks provided special coverage this morning for President Obama’s statement on the VA scandal investigation, in which he announced his acceptance of VA Secretary Eric Shinseki‘s resignation.

CBS News broke in at 11:14amET with Margaret Brennan anchoring from New York and CBS News’ Chief White House Correspondent Major Garrett reporting from the White House. ABC News broke in at 11:15amET with George Stephanopoulos anchoring in New York and Chief White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl reporting from the White House. NBC News broke in at 11:15amET with Savannah Guthrie anchoring alongside “Meet the Press” moderator David Gregory in New York; NBC News’ Chief White House Correspondent Chuck Todd reported from the White House.

“Secretary Shinseki offered me his own resignation. With considerable regret, I accepted,” President Obama said, going on to list Shinseki’s accomplishments as a U.S. soldier and VA Secretary. The president announced Deputy VA Secretary Sloan Gibson will serve as acting VA Secretary until a permanent replacement is found.

The first question went to Leo Shane from the Military Times. The second went to Bloomberg TV’s Phil Mattingly.

Broadcast Networks Cover Pres. Obama’s Statement on VA Controversy

ObamaThe broadcast networks cut in with special coverage of President Obama’s statement on the Department of Veterans Affairs scandal that left dozens of veterans in Phoenix dead waiting for medical care.

ABC News broke in at 10:57amET with George Stephanopoulos anchoring in New York and ABC Chief White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl reporting from the White House.

CBS News broke in at 10:57amET with “CBS This Morning’s” Charlie Rose and Norah O’Donnell anchoring from New York, and Chief White House correspondent Major Garrett reporting from the White House. NBC News also broke in at 10:57amET with Matt Lauer anchoring from New York and National Correspondent Peter Alexander reporting from the White House.

The president did not announce any firings, announcing Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki is leading an investigation into misconduct at VA facilities in Phoenix and elsewhere. The president vowed that anyone deemed responsible of “cooking the books” at VA facilities will be held accountable, and announced certain employees at VA facilities have been put on administrative leave.

The president took two questions. The first went to the Associated Press’s Jim Kuhnhenn; the second to Reuters’ Steve Holland.

White House Lockdown as TV Meteorologists Descend on Washington

The White House went on lockdown this afternoon just as local and national TV news meteorologists were planning live shots as part of the White House climate change report released earlier today. Security officials closed the gates, cleared the North Lawn, and asked occupants to stay inside the building after they spotted a blue Honda Civic parked near the White House’s front entrance.

According to secret service, the driver of the car was a “Treasury Department pass holder” who was not authorized to cross the secure perimeter. The lockdown was lifted after about 15 minutes.

NBC’s Al Roker and ABC meteorologist Ginger Zee (CBS’s morning show does not have a staff weatherperson) along with six meteorologists from local stations sat down with President Obama today for interviews on climate change. But a few also asked about the situation in Nigeria and how far the U.S. is willing to go to help rescue more than 200 schoolgirls being held by terror group Boko Haram.

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TV News Covers Pittsburgh-Area High School Stabbings

All three cable news networks covered a school stabbing spree that happened at a Pittsburgh-area high school this morning, where at least 20 are currently injured after a male student started stabbing people. It isn’t clear yet if he stabbed only students, or a mix of students and adults.

Fox News first reported the news at 8:35amET. Heather Nauert reported school stabbings during a fire drill at Franklin Regional Senior High School.

CNN first reported the stabbings at 8:50amET, with Chris Cuomo talking to Dr. Chris Kauffman, who was treating injured students at the regional hospital, via phone.

Chuck Todd opened “The Daily Rundown” at 9:01amET reporting the breaking news.

On the broadcast side, “Good Morning America” first reported the news at 8:03amET. “Today” first mentioned the stabbings at 8:30amET. “CBS This Morning” didn’t report the news during its broadcast.

NBC News also broke in with a special report on the school stabbing at 10amET with Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie anchoring, and National Correspondent Kate Snow reporting alongside them in New York.

“GMA” and “CBS This Morning” will be updating their shows across the country. Neither broke in with special coverage.

Mass Shooting at Ft. Hood, TX; Ivan Lopez Identified as Shooter

A mass shooting at Ft. Hood, Texas this afternoon has the news networks in continuing coverage tonight. The shots rang out at 4:50pmCT. The gunman has been identified as 34-year-old Ivan Lopez, an enlisted soldier, who killed himself. At least four people are dead, including Lopez, and 14 others wounded.

On Fox News, Bret Baier first reported the news at 6:08pmET, CNN’s Wolf Blitzer broke in at 6:13 and MSNBC’s Al Sharpton reported the news at 6:15. The story was the lead of the first feeds of the three evening network newscasts, with updates throughout and for later feeds. Brian Williams also updated NBC primetime viewers in the Eastern and Central time zones at 9:07pmET. As the incident took place on a military base, DC-based Justice and Pentagon correspondents led the reporting: Pierre Thomas for ABC, Bob Orr for CBS, Jim Miklaszewski for NBC, Barbara Starr for CNN and Jennifer Griffin for Fox News.

Fox News pre-empted “The O”Reilly Factor” and had Shepard Smith at the Fox News Deck at 8pmET. Megyn Kelly picked up at 9. John Berman was in for Anderson Cooper at 8pm and Blitzer was back at 9pm. Alex Wagner was in for Chris Hayes at 8 and Rachel Maddow picked up at 9 on MSNBC.

“We’re heartbroken something like this might have happened again,” Pres. Obama said in a statement from Chicago, adding investigators will ”get to the bottom of exactly what happened.”

Developing…

At a 10:45pm news conference, Ft. Hood Commanding General Mark Milley said the assailant had served four months in Iraq in 2011 and was “undergoing behavioral health and psychiatric treatment” for depression and anxiety, but had not been diagnosed with PTSD. Armed with a .45 caliber Smith & Wesson, which was not registered on the base, the gunman killed three military personal. Sixteen others were wounded. The gunman was stopped by a female officer who drew her weapon, at which point Lopez turned the gun on himself.

Networks Cover Announcement: ‘MH370 Ended in the Southern Indian Ocean’

The broadcast networks all interrupted their programming around 10amET to cover the Malaysian Prime Minister’s announcement that Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 “ended in the southern Indian Ocean.”

ABC News aired a special report with “Good Morning America’s” Josh Elliott anchoring along with correspondent David Kerley, anchor Bob Woodruff in Kuala Lumpur, correspondent David Wright in Australia, correspondent Gloria Riviera in Beijing, and contributor Steve Ganyard.

NBC News aired a special report on the broadcast network with “Today’s” Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie anchoring in New York, correspondent Bob Hager, correspondent Tom Costello in Washington, foreign correspondent Kier Simmons from Kuala Lumpur, and chief global correspondent Bill Neely in Australia.

CBS News also aired a special report with Charlie Rose and Clarissa Ward anchoring. Correspondent Holly Williams reported from Australia, correspondent Seth Doane from Kuala Lumpur, and correspondent Bob Orr from Washington, D.C.

The cable news networks also carried extended coverage of the news.

Coverage of Pres. Obama’s Statement on Ukraine

NBC News Obama special report_304x200President Obama will make a statement at 11amET on the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.

NBC News will break into NBC’s broadcast network with a special report from Savannah Guthrie with Chuck Todd reporting. ABC News will break in with Josh Elliott anchoring and Martha Raddatz and Jonathan Karl contributing. Charlie Rose and Norah O’Donnell will anchor for CBS News’ broadcast coverage.

The big three cable news networks will air the president’s statement live.

>More: President Obama spoke for five minutes, announcing new sanctions on Russian government officials and a Russian bank. He also announced an executive order that gives him the authority to impose additional sanctions on specific sectors in Russia’s economy.

Overnight Developments Keep Networks on the Air Covering Malaysia Airlines Mystery

Screen Shot 2014-03-20 at 9.26.33 AM

Around 11:30pmET last night we got word out of Australia that satellite images turned up two large objects, which immediately led investigators to believe it might have something to do with missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370. In the ensuing hours, Australian and Malaysian officials held news conferences as the U.S. cable news networks went in to overtime.

CNN’s Anderson Cooper and Don Lemon tag-teamed on two networks, CNN and CNNI, picking up from CNNI anchor John Vause who was on live with the news at 11:30pm; Fox News’ Shepard Smith, without the full complement of the Fox News Deck, anchored multiple overnight hours beginning in the MidnightET hour; on MSNBC Betty Nguyen anchored early coverage and Chris Jansing picked up around 2am continuing through the night. Al Jazeera America was live with the news during John Seigenthaler‘s regularly scheduled 11pm show. Seigenthaler and his team stayed on the air to cover the news.

Meanwhile, ABC’s David Wright was flying over the Indian Ocean in a U.S. Navy P-8 Poseidon surveillance plane in the South Indian Ocean. “What we’re being told by the flight crew here is that here is some sort of debris in the water. We’ll be the first plane on site,” said Wright on “Nightline.”

By the time “Good Morning America” came on the air, and Wright landed back in Perth, the nine hour search failed to locate the objects spotted by a satellite, instead finding only a freighter and two pods of dolphins. Wright’s report after the jump:

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On FNC, NYT Reporter Holds Breaking News on Malaysia Airlines Until It Hits NYTimes.com

Kelly SchmidtAll three cable news networks reported last night’s New York Times breaking news that missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370′s first turn that diverted the plane’s path was done by a computer system potentially programmed in the plane’s cockpit.

Megyn Kelly had the co-writer of the Times story, Michael Schmidt, on as a guest at the top of her show at 9:01pmET.

But Schmidt sat on his reporting for 23 minutes, until after the piece went live on the NYTimes.com.  “Way to hold it, right until the C block, Michael,” Kelly said sarcastically to Schmidt before he reported the news of the plane deliberately being diverted at  9:24pmET mark of the “Kelly File” (the funny exchange is after the jump).

Filling in on “Piers Morgan Live,” Bill Weir reported the Times story at 9:26pmET, talking to CNN safety analyst David Soucie and CNN aviation analyst Jim Tilmon.

MSNBC first mentioned the NY Times story at the top of “The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell” at 10:02pmET, as guest host Ari Melber turned to a report from NBC’s Tom Costello followed by a segment with former NTSB investigator Greg Feith and former corporate pilot Anthony Roman.

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