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Posts Tagged ‘George Stephanopoulos’

Greta Van Susteren: Stephanopoulos Didn’t Stop Susan Rice From Saying What She Meant

Rice GeorgeA new round of criticism aimed at National Security Adviser Susan Rice for comments she made on Sunday shows; this time about her recent comments on “This Week with George Stephanopoulos.” On Sunday, Rice said rescued Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl served with “honor and distinction.”

One of those critics is Greta Van Susteren, who blogged in response to statements the White House gave Fox News’ Chief White House Correspondent Ed Henry, claiming that in her comments, Rice meant “we should not forget that Bergdahl was serving his country in general.” The White House added Rice wasn’t “necessarily trying to characterize the circumstances of his capture which she said we’d have to learn more about.”

“If Susan Rice MEANT that, why didn’t she say it?” Van Susteren said. “ABC’s George Stephanopoulos never stopped her from saying what she meant. This is clearly a pathetic effort to clean up what she said.”

Rice, of course, became a political lightning rod in 2012 after she went on Sunday morning shows several days after the terrorist attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya. During her appearances, Rice suggested a controversial YouTube video was the prime catalyst for the attack, which was quickly rejected by Republicans, who claimed she knowingly misled the public.

Chris Wallace: White House Still Hasn’t Made Susan Rice Available to ‘Fox News Sunday’

WallaceOn “Fox News Sunday” yesterday, Chris Wallace noted National Security Adviser Susan Rice‘s Sunday show schedule, which didn’t include Fox News.

“National Security Adviser Susan Rice is appearing on two Sunday shows today, but the White House still hasn’t made her available to us since we interviewed her back in September of 2012, just five days after the Benghazi attack,” Wallace said.

Rice appeared on “This Week with George Stephanopoulos” and “State of the Union with Candy Crowley.”

This is the second time this year Wallace has chided the White House for not making Rice available for “FNS.” In February, Wallace noted that the White House only granted “Meet the Press” an interview with Rice, suggesting “perhaps Susan Rice didn’t want to answer the tough questions we would have asked” on the Benghazi attack.

“We’ve been through all of this, and I’ve had the opportunity to discuss this at great length,” Rice told Crowley on the Benghazi subject, adding she’s focused on her role as National Security Adviser and she won’t speculate about potentially appearing at another Benghazi hearing. For his part, Stephanopoulos didn’t ask Rice about Benghazi, spending the majority of their interview asking her about the ramifications of the weekend prisoner exchange of five Taliban prisoners for U.S. Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl.

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.

ABC News Has Best May Sweep Since Roone Arledge was In Charge

Goldston_Sawyer_Walters304ABC News is taking a victory lap after the network’s newscasts finished in first place in either the key news demo or total viewers, or, in the case of “Good Morning America,” both.

It was ABC’s best May sweep since since 1995, when legendary ABC News president Roone Arledge was in charge. As we reported earlier this week, “World News” won the A25-54 demo for the first time in more than six years. “Good Morning America” won the month in both Total Viewers and A25-54, with the largest demo lead over NBC’s “Today” in 20 years.

“This Week with George Stephanopoulos” finishes #1 in the A25-54 demo, its first win in that demo in nearly 21 years.

“Nightline” won its first sweeps period ever in Total Viewers in its new time slot out-delivering NBC’s “Late Night with Seth Meyers” and CBS’ “The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson.” (Meyers still takes the younger demos).

And “20/20″ wins the A18-49 demo in the Friday 10pm time slot and had its strongest May sweep in 7 years in Total Viewers, since May 2007.

Arledge is credited with building a formidable team of on-air journalists including Peter Jennings, Barbara Walters, Diane Sawyer, and David Brinkley during his tenure as president of ABC News from 1977 – 1998, putting ABC News in a competitive position for the first time with stalwarts CBS News and NBC News. Arledge passed away in 2002.

The May wins come as a transition in leadership is underway at ABC News with James Goldston (pictured above with Sawyer and Walters on Wednesday) taking over as news president in April from Ben Sherwood who is now president of the Disney/ABC TV group.

Much more in a release, with details, after the jump…

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Obama Announces Troop Cuts in Afghanistan

In a statement from the Rose Garden Tuesday afternoon, President Obama detailed his plan to “conclude our combat mission in Afghanistan.” Obama announced a reduction of U.S. troops from 33,000 to 9,800 at the beginning of 2015, and half that at the end of 2015. Then, by the end of 2016 — 15 years after the war in Afghanistan began — the president said the U.S. military “will draw down to a normal embassy presence in Kabul with a security assistance component.”

All three broadcast networks presented special reports: David Gregory anchored for NBC, George Stephanopoulos anchored for ABC and Norah O’Donnell anchored for CBS. Gregory was joined by Peter Alexander and Jim Miklaszewski, Stephanopoulos was joined by Jonathan Karl and Martha Raddatz, and O’Donnell was joined by Major Garrett and David Martin.

The cable news networks also provided live coverage. The president did not take questions from the press.

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.

Broadcast Networks Cover 9/11 Museum Dedication Ceremony

Broadcast networks broke in for special coverage of the 9/11 Memorial Museum opening this morning, where President Obama and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg spoke.

ABC News broke in at 10:05amET with George Stephanopoulos anchoring from New York. “World News” weekend anchor David Muir reported from the museum.

NBC News broke in at 10:07amET with Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie co-anchoring alongside special correspondent Tom Brokaw in studio with them. National correspondent Peter Alexander reported from the museum.

CBS News broke in at 10:10amET with Norah O’Donnell and “CBS This Morning: Saturday” co-host Anthony Mason co-anchoring in New York.

Local New York City stations produced their own coverage for the memorial dedication ceremony.

“A nation that stands tall, and united, and unafraid…because no act of terror can match the strength, or the character of our country,” President Obama said about America. “Like the great wall and bedrock that embrace us today, nothing can ever break us. Nothing can ever change who we are as Americans.”

The president then introduced Alison Crowther, the mother of financial worker Welles Crowther. Welles was a financial worker wearing a red bandana who died while helping evacuate fellow workers on 9/11; that red bandana is enshrined in the museum. His mother spoke after the president, alongside one of the people her son saved, Ling Young.

Barbara Walters Farewell: ‘True, I Was the First Female Co-Host… But Also True, I Was a Flop’

WaltersSawyerIt was a star-studded farewell for Barbara Walters at New York City’s Four Seasons restaurant tonight. From comedian Joan Rivers to commissioner Bill Bratton; from New York’s chronicler of scandal, Cindy Adams, to the man who plays the president on “Scandal,” Tony Goldwyn; from actor Woody Allen to attorney David Boies, But mostly, the pool room was packed with Walters’ fellow TV news colleagues and those ladies — past and present — from “The View.” Whoopi Goldberg and Sherri Shepherd; Meredith Vieira and Joy Behar.

Following a best of Barbara video, Disney Chairman Bob Iger welcomed the crowd, before Walters delivered a few words of thanks and admitting it hasn’t always been easy. “True, I was the first female co-host of a network news program. But also true, I was a flop. My male co-host didn’t want a partner and neither did the audience. I was drowning, gasping for air. Then someone threw me that life preserver called Specials with the biggest stars in news and show business and I learned how to swim again.”

Current and former evening news anchors were there, including Diane Sawyer and Brian Williams who arrived with Tom Brokaw, Katie Couric and fiancé John Molner; and Connie Chung (who was part of an ill-fated co-anchor pairing with Dan Rather) and husband Maury Povich. We caught up with early risers Savannah Guthrie and George Stephanopoulos along with their spouses, Mike Feldman, and Ali Wentworth, respectively, as they were heading out. Guthrie’s “Today” colleague Al Roker and his wife, ABC correspondent Deborah Roberts made the rounds as well.

Walters continued: “I’m grateful to the legendary Roone Arledge for bringing me to ABC News; thankful to David Westin for his steady leadership; to Ben Sherwood – you made us all believe we could win and with your leadership and passion, we did; and James Goldston – I’m told that all our shows are number one at the moment – you should quit right now.” Sherwood, Goldston and Westin were all on hand, as were other ABC News executives including Barbara Fedida, David Sloan, Jeanmarie Condon and John Green.

We spotted Jenny McCarthy hand-in-hand with fiance Donnie Wahlberg; the “Nightline” team of Juju ChangDan Abrams, and Dan Harris as well as a host of correspondents and anchors from ABC, NBC, CBS, MSNBC and Fox, including Elizabeth VargasAmy RobachDavid MuirNorah O’DonnellJon KarlGio Benitez, Dr. Richard Besser, Tory JohnsonRick Klein, Brian Ross, Mara Schiavocampo, Thomas RobertsAlicia MenendezHoda Kotb, Greta Van Susteren and Lisa Ling, a former “View” co-host, now woking on a new show for CNN.

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Barbara Walters on ‘Paving the Way’ for Women: ‘That’s My Legacy’

DIANE SAWYER, BARBARA WALTERS and ROBIN ROBERTSIt was a celebratory atmosphere tonight at ABC News Headquarters when the network’s Upper West Side New York City building was officially renamed the “Barbara Walters Building.”

“It’s not the interviews with presidents, nor heads of state, nor celebrities, nor even the Sterlings,” Walters said about her career legacy. “I hope that I played a small role in paving the way for so many of you fabulous women who are here tonight,” she continued, adding how pleased she is when women approach her about their achievements. “That’s my legacy” she said to a rousing applause.

Standing beside many ABC News colleagues, including Diane Sawyer, Robin Roberts, George Stephanopoulos, and Lara Spencer; along with Walt Disney Company Chairman Bob Iger, Disney/ABC TV President Ben Sherwood, and ABC News President James Goldston, Walters joked about having a building named after her in a city where Kennedy Airport and the Lincoln Tunnel reside: ”It may not be a landmark, but a couple of pigeons have already staked it out.”

“It makes me feel wonderful,” Walters told TVNewser after the ceremony in response to taglines that say, “she didn’t just report history, she made history.”

“The fact that my career turned out this way, it’s still an amazement to me,” she told us, highlighting her start as a writer at NBC’s “Today” which wasn’t clamoring to “put me on [air].” When she started out in the business, there “were almost none [women in TV news],” Walters told us.

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Sunday Show Ratings: April 20

On the heels of the news that George Stephanopoulos has signed a long-term deal to remain at ABC News, “This Week” takes home a win in both total viewers and the A25-54 demographic for the week of April 20.

CBS’ “Face the Nation” came in second and NBC’s “Meet the Press” came in third. Both shows, along with “Fox News Sunday,” were coded as specials due to the Easter holiday. Compared to the same week last year, which was the week of the Boston Marathon bombings, all five shows are down across the board.

Cable replays of “Fox News Sunday” averaged a combined 1,618,000 total viewers and 388,000 A25-54 viewers. Rebroadcasts of “Meet the Press” delivered an additional 1,083,000 total viewers and 294,000 demo viewers.

“Face the Nation” is based on the first half-hour only, as the full contiguous hour aired in just 50% of the country.

The numbers for April 20:

Network Program Total Viewers A25-54
ABC
“This Week” 2.62M 776K
CBS
“Face the Nation” 2.59M 721K
NBC “Meet the Press” 2.19M 667K
FOX “Fox News Sunday” 1.15M 371K
Univision “Al Punto” 582K 310K

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