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MEDIA MONITOR

This Morning

"Today" led with the VA tornadoes. "Early Show" led with the VA tornadoes. "GMA" led with the VA tornadoes and hosted Newt Gingrich.

Oddball

New York Sun's Gitell writes, "the possibility of" MSNBC's Chris Matthews running against Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA) is "intensifying." Although Matthews said he's "'not getting involved in it' when asked about whether he would seek the position in" '10, "it is odd" the "Hardball" host "would employ his television program in a way that would make him a favorable candidate to run for" PA SEN as a Dem.

 

While broadcasting "Hardball" from Philly during the week of the PA primary, Matthews, who ran for Congress in PA in '74, hosted Philly Mayor Michael Nutter (D), Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-PA) and the Dem chairs of Allegheny, Montgomery and Lackawanna counties, "local figures vital to any statewide candidacy." Alleghany Co. Dem chair James Burn, on Matthews: "It would be interesting. ... He's got a great history. He knows how to do it. I look forward to having a conversation with him about his candidacy" (4/29).

"So I've been in hog heaven today."
--HRC endorser/NC Gov. Mike Easley (D), on standing with a strong, powerful woman, mult., 4/29.

The Cuomo Five

Washington Post's Kurtz profiled ABC's Chris Cuomo. The "GMA" co-anchor, whose family includes father/ex-NY Gov. Mario Cuomo (D) and brother/NY AG Andrew Cuomo (D), "turned his back on the family business." "The youngest of five siblings," Cuomo grew up while his father was winning three terms as gov., "moving to the Albany mansion at the age of 13." Cuomo, on the media: "It's tough to like the people who seem to be going after your family. ... It's something I think about when I do my own labeling. ... I think it helps make me a better journalist" (4/29).

 

The Naked News

NBC's Brian Williams writes in his blog about why he did not attend the annual White House Correspondents Assn dinner on 4/26. Williams: "I did not attend the Correspondent's Dinner this weekend, though sampled some of the festivities on C-Span (I thought the President was very good). I have attended those dinners for 26 years or so, and on occasion I opt for home and hearth. I saw the first 50 laps of Talladega, however, from the comfort of my kitchen."

Williams also makes some observations about the New York Times: "I read that the New York Times Sunday (and weekday) circulation is down. I must admit that on Sundays it becomes a tough paper to figure out. While this week's paper featured an op-ed piece by Elizabeth Edwards bemoaning the lack of serious, in-depth coverage of the political race, it's tough to figure out exactly what readers the paper is speaking to, or seeking. ... Promoted on Page One was 'A Sex Chair Becomes A Battlefield.' Alrighty then. ... The lead story in the Travel Section? The rise of vacation resorts catering to nudists. It did occur to me that I haven't been getting out a lot on weekends. Is it just me?" ("Daily Nightly," MSNBC.com, 4/28).

Laugh Track

Jay Leno: "Have you noticed, since oil prices went up, [Dick Cheney] hasn't had one heart attack? ... The Bush administration wants our nation's 80 million recreational boaters to help fight terrorism by watching out for small boats that could deliver a nuclear bomb. Well, that should work out well, huh? You got a bunch of beer-drinking fishermen in bass boats with rifles. What could go wrong there? Oh, no chance of error there. ... And boy, it was hot this weekend. ... You know what makes it really uncomfortable? It's not the heat. It's not even the humidity. It's just Al Gore going, 'I told you so! I told you so!' ... In fact, it was so hot, Hillary Clinton challenged Barack Obama to another debate, just so she could get the cold shoulder. ... If you're following the campaign, you know John McCain is currently on his tour of forgotten places. He's touring what he calls forgotten places. Of course, when you're 71, the room you just walked into is a forgotten place, isn't it? 'Why did I come in here again? I was just here.' And Barack Obama also on a tour, of places he'd like to forget, like his church. It's never your enemies that kill you. It's always your friends, isn't it? Barack's former pastor, Jeremiah Wright, the guy is everywhere. He's everywhere now. In fact, next week, he's making a guest appearance on 'How I Met Your Mother.' Did you know that? He's playing the secretary. No, he's making speeches. He's on the radio. And Reverend Wright says he'd rather just go home and retire, but the money Hillary is paying him is so good" ("Tonight Show," NBC, 4/28).

Jon Stewart: "And of course, since it's also Monday, it's time for our weekly Charismatic Black Preacher Roundup. ... So who will Lady Luck shine on this week? Time to Spin! The! Wheel! All right, let's bring out the wheel of talented black preachers. Got a lot of great ones on there. Who are we going to cover today. Let's take a spin. And it looks like ... it looks like it's ... Jeremiah Wright! Whoa! Whoa! I can't can't believe it! It's almost like the entire show was dependent on that having been the outcome of that spin. As you will recall, Reverend Wright is Barack Obama's former pastor. He has become a bit of a YouTube sensation for his smash hit video 'G*d Damn America!' If you haven't seen it, do a quick YouTube search for black, comma, angry, comma, dashiki or, for some reason, kitten roller coaster. ... Reverend Wright insists that the video 'G*d Damn America' has been taken out of context and exploited by a ravenous media, especially on MSNBC's new show, 'Exploitative and Out of Context Video' with your host, Joe Ravenous. Now the reverend has laid relatively low since the controversy first broke, but this weekend was his re-coming out party. Wright made several nationally televised appearances, giving white Americans uncomfortable with his fiery rhetoric a chance to reacquaint themselves. Wright appeared on PBS, before the National Press Club and at the [NAACP]. And much like salsa, Wright offered commentary in mild, medium or muy picante. [on screen: Video of Bill Moyers' interview of Wright]. Oh PBS. Is there nothing you can't remove the flavor from? Come on, we're not total p*ssies, we can handle a little onion, some of those spicy peppers. Show me the National Press Club. [on screen: Video of Wright's appearance before the NPC]. That was zesty with a little kick of boom at the end. Bam! They're gonna be tasting that one for a while. All right, I think I'm ready. Bring me the caliente. [on screen: Video of Wright speaking to members of the Detroit NAACP]. I will say something right here and right now, I love this f*cking guy. ... But the reverend's point is that there are differences between the white and black communities, and that those differences are not, in his words, deficiencies for either group, and that his more colorful comments were merely style choices. I'm probably not explaining this in a very entertaining way. ... Reverend? [on screen: Video of Wright at the NPC]. Isn't he bombastic? First of all, when did John F. Kennedy turn into Porky Pig? Stewart, speaking like Porky Pig: 'It's not what your country can do for you ...' Whatever you want to say about the substance of what the reverend is saying, interpret it as you may, but if I had had a rabbi who brought that much game, I wouldn't have spent this Passover neck deep in a bacon and cheese Croissandwich. ... Let me tell you something, Jeremiah Wright is not the one running for president. He's the guy who used to talk at the church of one of the guys who is running. And that guy appeared on Chris Wallace's Fox News Sunday. [on screen: Video of Obama's interview on Fox, where he discusses Iran, Pakistan and Iraq, among other topics]. Substantive and thoughtful answers from the actual candidate. ... By the way, you know, if Senator Obama really wanted attention, he just has to go to 'Vanity Fair.' [on screen: Photo of Miley Cyrus in 'Vanity Fair' with Obama's face superimposed on hers]" ("Daily Show," Comedy Central, 4/28).

 

Stephen Colbert: "Nation, there's so much bad news nowadays. The economy, the food shortage, terrorists escaping from Guantanamo Bay and then getting movie deals [on screen: Photo of the new "Harold and Kumar: Escape from Guantanamo Bay" movie]. What is happening to the world? But there is some good news out there. When it comes to ending the fierce Clinton-Obama primary rivalry, Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean is finally showing some sack. Listen to what Dean told the 'Financial Times' about who the superdelegates will choose for the party's nominee. Quote, 'I do not think in the long run it will come down to the popular vote.' Exactly. Popular vote is a stupid way to settle any election. [on screen: Audience cheers]. Yes! Big superdelegate fans out there tonight. You can't go with the popular vote. Just ask president of Zimbabwe, Robert Mugabe. He's on your side, Howard" ("Colbert Report," Comedy Central, 4/28).

Conan O'Brien: "I can't believe this. This is upsetting to me. Hillary Clinton now says she wants another debate with Barack Obama. She said the 48th time is the charm, I guess. I don't think we need to see this again. She wants another one. Here's the latest. Hillary Clinton says she's willing to debate Barack Obama ... This is what she said: anytime, anywhere, and would even meet him in the back of a truck. Yeah, which is surprising, 'cause the 'anytime, anywhere, even in back of a truck' offer is usually made by Bill Clinton. ... John McCain is trying to get attention. People aren't really paying attention to him as much. But he's doing his best. He's out there. His slogan is 'Yes, I'm here.' Someone please pay attention to me. This is the latest. Today, John McCain campaigned across the state of Florida. He's in Florida. Yeah, McCain likes campaigning in Florida because everyone there calls him 'the Kid.' ... His charming youthfulness amuses them. Kind of a strange thing happened this weekend at a big event in Washington, DC. President Bush, I guess he got excited, so he picked up a baton and he started conducting the U.S. Marine Band. Yeah, unfortunately, the president got upset because the band didn't know the song, 'The Wheels on the Bus.' They go 'round and 'round, apparently" ("Late Night," NBC, 4/28).

             TOP TEN THINGS SADDAM HUSSEIN WOULD SAY IF 
                         HE WERE ALIVE TODAY

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e>
          10. Let me guess -- Bush still hasn't caught
              Osama.
           9. Have I missed any big developments in beret
              technology?
           8. I'm not sure I want to live in a world where
              Star Jones is getting divorced.
           7. It's nice to see a stable Iraq.
           6. Free Wesley Snipes!
           5. Please tell me Meredith and McDreamy finally
              got together.
           4. No number 4 -- writer hiding in spiderhole
              -- still a reference, people.
           3. Damn these rope burns -- anyone got a
              turtleneck?
           2. I may have been a brutal dictator, but I kept
              gas prices under two dollars.
           1. Compared to Fallujah, Hell ain't too bad
              (CBS, 4/28).

e>

This article appears in the April 29, 2008 edition of Latest Edition.

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