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CBS News Eyes Late Election Night, No Matter What

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CBS News and Sports president Sean McManu (standing) and Evening News EP Rick Kaplan (seated, third from right) in the control room.

After a stop at ABC News’ Times Square studios, we made our way uptown to West 57th Street and CBS News HQ. Katie Couric, anchoring general election campaign coverage for the first time, was joined on the set by Bob Schieffer, Jeff Greenfield, Sharyl Atkisson and Byron Pitts.

Couric’s Evening News EP, Rick Kaplan was the quarterback of tonight’s coverage. Also in the control room: CBS News & Sports president Sean McManus, SVP Paul Friedman and (no pressure) CBS Corp. CEO Les Moonves. For a control room on an election night, it was remarkably quiet and calm. But then, it was early.

Back in the newsroom, political analysts Dee Dee Myers and Dan Bartlett appeared from a remote camera on one side of the newsroom (video below), while Armen Keteyian was on the other side reporting on any voting irregularities.

It will be a long night for Couric & Co. They will be staying for the Webcast on CBSNews.com and CNET.com beginning at 2amET.

After the jump, the decision desk, and see who else we spotted in the control room…


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The CBS News decision desk — where the decisions to call states and races are made. Kathy Frankovic, director of surveys is front and center. Linda Mason, CBS’s SVP of standards and special projects tells TVNewser, it’s basically “a room full of PhDs.” Mason was pleased with the exit poll data and predicted, and this was about 7:30pmET, that CBS would not likely be able to call the election for either candidate until at least 11pmET.

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CBS Corp. CEO Les Moonves (standing, center) and his wife, anchor of The Early Show Julie Chen (seated, center) watch election coverage from the CBS News control room.

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