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Posts Tagged ‘Nia-Malika Henderson’

Chuck Todd’s First ‘Meet the Press:’ ‘This Program Will Continue to Evolve’

MTPToddChuck Todd opened his first “Meet the Press,” surrounded by the press. At a new desk, with Todd at its center, NBC’s political director introduced those around him: MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough, Nia Malika Henderson of the “Washington Post,” NBC’s Andrea Mitchell and waiting in the wings, BuzzFeed’s John Stanton and Amy Walter, formerly of ABC News, now with the Cook Political Report.

Said Todd: “Obviously it’s a pretty big honor for me to be sitting in this chair as the 12th moderator of this program following in the footsteps of the likes of Martha Rountree, Lawrence Spivak, Tim Russert and, of course, David Gregory.”

“As you can see, we’re making a few changes around here. As I like to say, we’re living in a house as we remodel it, so the program in this studio will continue to evolve over the coming months.”

Todd began the show with his one-on-one with Pres. Obama on the issue of ISIS. He then got reaction from his guests. The second segment included Todd’s Obama interview as it pertained to domestic issues, and again, analysis from the press, including Walter and Stanton, who, like Todd, sports facial hair: “because we didn’t have enough goatees,” Todd joked.

The next block included a new segment called “Who needs Washington?” Kevin Tibbles reported on how Oklahoma City is just one city moving forward without much help from Washington, DC, followed by in-studio interviews with the mayors of Oklahoma City, Tacoma and Pittsburgh — a republican, an independent and a democrat, respectively.

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Howard Kurtz’s ‘MediaBuzz’ Projects ‘Authority, Energy and Pace’

It’s been a rough year for Howard Kurtz, but you wouldn’t know it by today’s launch of “MediaBuzz” on Fox News Channel.

After his sudden departures from CNN’s “Reliable Sources” and Tina Brown’s Daily Beast, Kurtz appears to have made a seamless transition to Fox News. “MediaBuzz” projected authority, energy and pace.

Clearly, Kurtz was in his comfort zone. Most of his guests were familiar faces from his 15-year run at “Reliable Sources” – David Zurawik of the Baltimore Sun, Washington Post’s Nia-Malika Henderson, media entrepreneur Lauren Ashburn.

In fact, Ashburn, a Fox News contributor, had so much face time, she served as a de facto co-host. Along with appearing in the opening two segments, she co-hosted “Digital Download,” and was on set with Kurtz for his sign-off.

Kurtz has a complicated history with Ashburn. His involvement in her new venture, Daily Download, a Daily Beast competitor, did not endear him to Brown, who later fired him. Ashburn showed up regularly on “Reliable Sources” and followed Kurtz to Fox News.

I couldn’t help but notice that Ashburn, like so many Fox News females, is blonde.

Ditto for guest Michelle Cottle, Washington reporter for The Daily Beast, and Fox’s Jamie Colby, who anchored a news break during the show. The only non-blonde was the Post’s Henderson, who is African American.

“MediaBuzz” opened with a lively panel discussion on media criticism of President Obama’s handling of Syria. Kurtz used the opportunity to take a shot, albeit a mild one, at his new employer. (Since joining the network in June, Kurtz had been criticized for avoiding negative assessments of Fox.)

After MSNBC contributors Robert Gibbs and David Axelrod, both former Obama officials, were lambasted by a panelist for being mouthpieces for the President, Kurtz said it was “fair to question” whether Fox regulars Karl Rove and Rick Santorum were also “pushing an agenda.” At Fox, that passes for napalm.

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