So Jake Tapper has begun a nightly 11:00 show for CNN during the D.C. stare-down. Excellent. If a new Nightline is born from this fiasco, that would be a lasting benefit of the president’s reckless brinksmanship. Tapper has one of the two “must-see” news shows from Cable Land, the other being Special Report, but while The Lead helps me with radio show prep it isn’t on when the country can see it at night. Part of the repair project in D.C. will be rebuildng a serious MSM, and prime time or even 11:00 PM Tapper would be a huge piece of that.
So too would be regular Fox Specials with Brit Hume. Hume is a very young 71 and like David Brinkley in his last turn at ABC, the most respected fellow in D.C. media. If FNC was on its game, it would find a way to put Hume on a lot more than he is, talking seriously about the big subjects, perhaps with larger panels of serious people of both sides. Yes, Chris Wallace is terrific on Fox News Sunday, but how about an Ernie Banks “Let’s Play Two?” Put Hume on after Hannity some nights, with interviews he has taped earlier in the day. Shuttling between Tapper and Hume would actually be worth staying up for on the east coast and a terrific alternative on the west coast.
And if the President really wanted people to believe he had answers and a plan other than canned talking points and a desire to punish Republicans, and Speaker Boehner out of a misplaced frustration born of getting facepalmed by Putin, he’d invite Tapper and Hume for taped interviews at the White House. Don’t hold your breath.
On Tuesday’s program, Tapper candidly admitted to me that “I haven’t heard Republicans comparing the Democrats to suicide bombers or to kidnappers or to arsonists.” (RealClearPolitics picked up the audio and transcript.)
On the same program, Brit Hume declared that “the divisions were not as deep” in the days of Watergate as they are today, and that in yesterday’s White House “press conference” the “performance by the news media in that news conference today was one of the saddest things I’ve ever seen. It was just pathetic.”
So a collapsing presidency propped up by fourth string appointees and surrounded by a mostly sycophantic MSM is taking the country over a cliff –terrific. At least we should get some decent coverage of the event.