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Posts Tagged ‘Scott McClellan’

What Will “President Obama” Mean For Fox News?

hannity_1-19.jpgThe New York Times’ Brian Stelter takes a detailed look at what the future of Fox News will be with a Democrat in the White House.

FNC SVP Bill Shine says, “All I know is that over the course of the next four years, we’re going to do what we do really well — cover the news in a fair and balanced way and put on a very good product.”

But, as EVP of news editorial John Moody notes, “Will we give this incoming administration a Greek chorus of exaltation? No, but that speaks more about the other networks than about us.”

On the economic side, Brad Adgate, SVP for research at Horizon Media, says FNC is on “firm financial footing” in 2009. Adgate says FNC has “created appointment viewing on slow news days” and that “audience loyalty allow Fox to charge higher rates.”

Eric Alterman, liberal media columnist and author of “What Liberal Media?” sees FNC in a good spot with the new administration. “Fox is in a much better position with a liberalish Democrat in the White House than they were with a Republican,” he says.

But former White House press secretary Scott McClellan notes where FNC is likely to lose one household. “They’re certainly going to lose some market share at the White House,” said McClellan.

Earlier: FNC’s Jay Wallace looks to 2009 and reflects on the 2008 election.

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Hughley: “I Think We’re Breaking Convention”

hughley_11-15.jpgFollowing its premiere less than a month ago, CNN’s “D.L. Hughley Breaks The News” has garnered much attention and response. After the first episode, which included a news-breaking interview with former Bush press secretary Scott McClellan, reviews were mixed.

And some of the negative reaction came from the African American community. Advertising Age’s Pepper Miller wrote earlier this month, “As it stands now, none of this works for D.L., the CNN brand or the Black community.” But she did have a suggestion: “CNN should keep D.L. I say get a newsy format but allow D.L. to be his authentic self. He’s hot, engaging, raw and relevant when he’s sharing his opinions one-on-one or in a group discussion.”

“If you get what I’m doing and dig what I’m doing, keep watching,” Hughley tells TVNewser. “If not, I hope you check it out and watch us evolve.

“I’m three weeks into this thing. Before people judge me too harshly I’d like a chance to develop and see what it is we turn it into.”

A tipster tells us there are rumblings Hughley is not happy with the state of the show, and that the “relationship with CNN isn’t quite what he expected.”

Hughley calls talk of unhappiness the “silliest thing I’ve ever heard” — although the reason may be because of the unexpected nature of the partnership.

“I don’t have an office, I don’t have craft services I don’t have a writers room, but I’ve never had more fun,” he says. “Never.”

He says the idea of leaving the show is “like leaving a party to go check out another party.”

“I think we’re breaking convention,” he says. “It’s an idea that I would have never conceived of. But it is a seamless transition.”

Hughley says he recently got a call from CNN/U.S. president Jon Klein saying how “great we’re doing.” Last week’s program was the 2nd highest-rated prime time show in the A25-54 demo.

Click continued to see a segment from last night’s show — a discussion with Republican strategist Bay Buchanan

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CNN Breaks Into Comedy

hughley_10-27.jpgCNN’s foray into comedy/news hybrid programming debuts on Saturday at 10pmET, with the premiere of D.L. Hughley Breaks the News. Reaction around the web was mixed (pictured: Hughley interviews “Freddie Mack” during Saturday’s show):

• The Baltimore Sun’s David Zurawik thought the program was “off to a promising start.” He writes that, “Hughley’s best moments covering a span that started with a young Sammy Davis Jr. in the 1933 film Rufus Jones for President, and extended to an interview with Scott McClellan,” while, “The show’s worst moments involved Hughley interacting with some of CNN’s regular correspondents.”

While noting some segments worked better than others, Zurawik writes, “CNN could have a winner.”

• The Daily Voice’s Christopher J. Metzler writes the program “reinforces black stereotypes,” and puts the blame on both CNN and Hughley. “In the course of one hour, Hughley and his CNN producers managed to rearticulate the vilest stereotypes of blacks, especially the notion that at our core, black men are pimps and black women hoes,” he writes.

“Ostensibly liberal networks such as CNN get a pass as evidenced by the lack of outrage about this show and ostensibly conservative networks such as Fox get pilloried as evidenced by the fact that Bill O’Reilly was taken to task for his comments about the ‘normal’ atmosphere at Sylvia’s restaurant in Harlem,” writes Metzler.

What do you think? Vote now — and after the jump, see Hughley’s news-breaking interview with former White House spokesperson Scott McClellan

What did you think of CNN’s new show, “D.L. Hughley Breaks the News”?
( surveys)

Click continued to see Hughley’s interview with McClellan…

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D.L. Hughley Breaks Some News

hughley_10-23b.jpgIt didn’t take long for “D.L. Hughley Breaks the News” to actually break some news. During the taping of the first program today (which airs Saturday night at 10pmET), former White House press secretary Scott McClellan endorsed Sen. Barack Obama.

Hughley urged McClellan to “endorse somebody, damnit.”

And McClellan did. “From the very beginning I have said I am going to support the candidate that has the best chance for changing the way Washington works and getting things done. And I will be voting for Barack Obama,” said McClellan.

Griffin: “Watch out CNN and FOX”

maddow_10-16.jpgOn Tuesday night, there weren’t any exclusive interviews, lengthy Special Comments, or debates on MSNBC. Or on the other cablers. But on a usual Tuesday night, MSNBC topped CNN and FNC in the A25-54 demo in prime time.

“This is just a statement about the hard work going on here,” MSNBC president Phil Griffin tells TVNewser. “And the success of MSNBC’s prime time. Watch out CNN and Fox.”

The last time MSNBC topped CNN and FNC in prime time demo, when Bill O’Reilly was hosting The Factor, was May 29, the day Olbermann had Scott McClellan in his first cable interview.

Although first place in the category is rare, MSNBC has recently begun to split 2nd place with CNN. Part of the reason is Rachel Maddow, whose strong ratings at 9pmET (placing 2nd, behind Hannity & Colmes, in the demo 11 out of her 23 programs) have helped up the prime time average. “She’s a huge hit,” says Griffin. “We’re in the game. It’s a three-way race. It has never been like that. It’s been a slow growth for two years, but we committed to making a statement during this election, and we did, and look at this. We’ve got a more and more loyal audience, an audience we never had before.”

The ratings race may be closer than ever, but bronze is still far from silver — and silver far from the gold. During the third quarter of 2008, Fox News was way out in front, followed by CNN firmly in 2nd and MSNBC in 3rd place. FNC and CNN have been helped by strong ratings performances during debates and other political events as well.

It wasn’t just prime time — Chris Matthews‘ Hardball won in the demo at 7pmET on Tuesday. “Look at Matthews’ numbers. Phenomenal. We start at 5:00 and it helps build to prime,” Griffin says.

But what happens if the main target of Olbermann and Maddow, the present administration, becomes Barack Obama-led? “We don’t care who’s in there. We’ve got a loyal audience now,” says Griffin.

(Olbermann gave a three-minute, Daily Kos-teased Special Comment mid-show during Tuesday’s program.)

Last Night in “Talking Points”

factor_7-30.JPGThe soap opera saga that is the Scott McClellan-talking points comments, in which he implied, than denied and apologized, then MSNBC doubted, that Bill O’Reilly and others at Fox News received Bush White House talking points, continued last night.

• O’Reilly replayed his phone conversation with McClellan yesterday on the radio, and ended his “Talking Points” memo (no relation) with: “He was a stand-up guy to come on. He knew it was going to be that way. Finally, here is the bigger picture. I have had enough dishonesty from the media and I’m betting you have to. So we are going to confront blatant deception and go after the deceivers no matter where they are.”

• O’Reilly’s 8pmET foil, MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann, played the Radio Factor segment but had a bit of a different take, as he spent a segment discussing with contributor Eugene Robinson. “If we’re partners, Scott McClellan owes me money,” Olbermann said. “[O'Reilly] made this deal all about him, that he never got talking points from the White House, but what about his producers, his commentators, what about the other Fox noise machines like [Sean] Hannity. They’re not mentioned here – Are they conspicuous by their absence?”

Alan Colmes, whose name was raised by Dick Morris on Monday as someone who Morris sent Clinton White House talking points to, denied the implication on his blog yesterday. “If someone was sending me talking points, I never saw them,” he wrote. “And, frankly, I have nothing against talking points as long as they’re used with discretion.”

• FNC’s Greta Van Susteren wants her own correction all the way from North Korea. On Gretawire, she wrote, “Now it is my turn…I never got talking points from the White House and I would like McClellan to correct himself. Generalizing is wrong.”

Click here for the O’Reilly segment last night, and continued for the Olbermann segment…

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Bringing the Talking Points Story Full Circle

hardball_7-29.JPGThe logical next stop in the Scott McClellan-talking points story that has developed further today is the place it all started — MSNBC’s Hardball.

Today Mike Barnicle, filling in for Chris Matthews, and his guests, Pat Buchanan and Joan Walsh, all agreed Bill O’Reilly was not getting talking points from the Bush White House, as McClellan had at first indicated on Friday.

“I agree with Bill O’Reilly here, I don’t think he’d take talking points from anyone,” said Barnicle. “He’s not taking talking points from…he’s not taking them from Roger Ailes, he’s not taking them from anyone.”

“I think the guy wouldn’t have the ratings he does, have the audience he does, if he’s spouting the party line,” said Buchanan.

Even the guest representing the left, Walsh, agreed. While joking, “This story for liberals was too good not to be true,” she said, “Its rare that I would ever come to Bill O’Reilly’s defense. But I don’t see any evidence at this point that they were officially disseminating points one through nine and they were then being parroted on Fox News.”

Will this be the end? We’ll see if O’Reilly, or Keith Olbermann, or Howard Kurtz, or anyone else involved since Friday have anything else to say….

> More: Click continued to see the Hardball segment…

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Scratch That — McClellan Says O’Reilly Didn’t Receive Talking Points

oreillytv_7-29.JPGThe newest wrinkle to the Scott McClellan-talking points story twists the whole situation 180 degrees. McClellan now says FNC anchor Bill O’Reilly never received White House talking points.

Johnny Dollar has the audio from today’s Radio Factor, in which McClellan appeared as a guest. “The truth is I messed up. I was specifically not trying to single anyone out, including you,” said McClellan. “There were people, not you, but there were people.

As for the response to his comments: “Some people tried to paint it in a black and white term to their preconceived notions,” said McClellan. “I should not have left it open to interpretation.”

Regarding MSNBC’s Chris Matthews, who conducted the original interview, O’Reilly said, “Matthews played you. He played you.”

Later, when things got heated between the two, McClellan said, “You know the way these interviews go, Matthews is a guy that interrupts you, just like you’re interrupting now.”

Click continued to hear the McClellan-O’Reilly interview…

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Tracing the “Talking Points” Comment

mcclellan_7-29.JPGIt all started at 5:22pmET last Friday.

That’s when former White House press secretary (and best-selling author) Scott McClellan told Hardball’s Chris Matthews the Bush White House would send Fox News commentators “talking points.”

McClellan made the distinction, “between the journalists and between the commentators,” but when pressed by Matthews if “people say, ‘call Sean [Hannity], call Bill [O'Reilly], call whoever,’” McClellan concurred.

“Certainly it wasn’t necessarily something I was doing, but it was something we at the White House, yes, were doing in getting them talking points and making sure they knew where we were coming from,” he said, although he qualified, “I think that happens both ways when people go on other networks that are favorable to Democrats.”

Next, the story got picked up by Countdown Friday night. “It’s one of those things you kind of assumed to have been true all along, and yet you are shocked when hard confirmation actually shows up on your door,” said Keith Olbermann.

Then, on Sunday, the story made an appearance on CNN’s Reliable Sources. Host Howard Kurtz discussed the Hardball segment with National Review’s Jim Geraghty and commentator/author Keli Goff: “Has McClellan kind of ripped the lid off a seamy situation here, where the Bush White House was funneling its message, its talking points, to the likes of Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity?”

Then, on The Radio Factor yesterday, and on his show last night, O’Reilly addressed the notion — and called out the “idiot” McClellan.

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President Bush, Thousands Others, Attend Snow Funeral

snow_7-17.JPGPresident George W. Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney and thousands others attended the funeral for former White House press secretary and Fox News anchor Tony Snow today in Washington, D.C. Snow passed away on Saturday at the age of 53.

“He knew the job of a reporter was vigorous. He understood the profession and always treated it with respect,” said Bush during the service. “We will always remember his wry sense of humor and abundant goodness. We will also remember he was lots of fun.”

Others in attendance included former White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card FNC commentator Karl Rove and the person who Snow replaced, Scott McClellan.

This afternoon two more attendees, FNC anchors Brit Hume and Chris Wallace, were interviewed about the service on The Live Desk.

“It was a beautiful service and it really spoke so much to Tony,” said Wallace. “I think the central theme was, how do you make sense of such a good man, such a decent man who lived such a wonderful life, but such a short life.”

Click continued to see the Hume and Wallace interview (via Johnny Dollar)…

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