By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

After Russert, the deluge

How thin is the NBC News bench? The Los Angeles Times reports that the top three contenders for Tim Russert’s “Meet the Press” perch are David Gregory, Chris Matthews and Joe Scarborough. Good grief. I’m adding “Face the Nation” to my podcast subscriptions right now. (Via Romenesko.)

Media Nation’s top two (and extremely unlikely) contenders: Gwen Ifill and Aaron Brown.

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  1. Anonymous

    Good Grief Dan, Gwen Ifill? I don’t even want her for W’Week. I’m in agreement with James Wolcott that she’s a bit too self-involved and though I think they finally removed the big smiling shot of her opening the show, I’m surprised they didn’t change the name to ‘Gwen Ifill’s Washington Week.’ As soon as the last word is spoken it takes about a mili-sec. to flash Gwen’s name in the credits. Go with Brown! A young guy to consider might be Chip Reid. Or they could go to a throwback Meet the Press format and actually have a moderated panel.

  2. O-FISH-L

    It would take at least two giants to replace the colossal Tim Russert at NBC, and the current contract obligations of those two with Fox News Channel would likely preclude any immediate deal. Only Bill O’Reilly could step in for Russert on Meet the Press and only Michael Barone could replace Russert in the role of NBC political analyst / numbers guy. O’Reilly is the best interviewer on TV and Barone is without peer as an analyst. In terms of credibility on political coverage, NBC and MSNBC was a one-act pony, said pony now suddenly deceased. Only the likes of O’Reilly and Barone could stabilize the situation and perhaps improve it. Of course NBC will ignore my advice and tack left, further diminishing the brand and shedding viewers.

  3. Anonymous

    Joe Scarbrough?!?!?!? Larry King would be better than that.It just shows how all news outfits are focused on personality than they are of competence.

  4. Mark M.

    As much as I like Scarborough, he doesn’t have the gravitas to host – he’s not a very serious guy.Matthews has character flaws that would prevent him from being a competent host (namely that he likes to hear himself talk so much that he would make the entire show about his own opinion).Gregory actually wouldn’t be a bad pick. He’s on the liberal side, but not over-the-top like Olbermann. My pick would be Andrea Mitchell though.

  5. Anonymous

    I just read a story in USA Today that stated Russert reluctantly moved from management to Meet the Press. There may be someone out there that we’ve never heard of that will turn out well. But I agree, the bench is rather thin and there is not much out there in other organizations either. O’Reilly? You’re kidding, right? I’d try Jon Keller before him. He’s more qualified.

  6. Anonymous

    Am it russert just the fat and corruption media operative?ameriki need to googling: “mighty wurlitzer” +ciathen to understanding usa not the free it russert media collaborator of war criminal but loving the praise of man?

  7. Bill Weye

    I’m surprised NBC hasn’t floated Anderson Cooper . . .Mark my words, they’re looking for a “scud stud” to fill this post.

  8. Peter Porcupine

    Brit Hume or Chris Wallace, with a preference for the latter.Brokaw would be best, and I’m glad we’ll have him through the end of the year, anyway.

  9. Don, American

    I love Gwen Ifill, but I say Dan Kennedy for the job.

  10. Bella

    Oh, my, please don’t let it be Chris Matthews or Gwen Ifill. Joe Scarborough would be the best of those mentioned.

  11. Dan Kennedy

    Bella: Scarborough? Wow. The best I can say about him is that he’s gotten much better than I ever thought he was capable of being, which isn’t saying much. Here are a couple more ideas: Chuck Todd. This isn’t original with me, but it’s intriguing. A little like Russert in the beginning: a (mostly) behind-the-scenes guy who really knows his stuff. Or CNN’s John King, who’s very solid.

  12. Anonymous

    The perfect person for both jobs, DC bureau chief and MTP host — Brian Lamb

  13. jhall

    I was going to offer up Chuck Todd too. He’s got the insider knowledge, and a keen ability to analyze the political game, almost as much as Russert. Whether he has,or can develop the gravitas needed to handle Meet the Press, or the deep knowledge of the issues like Russert is an open question. But he’s certainly more serious than Matthews or Scarborough (both of whom I enjoy, but don’t see as MTP worthy).

  14. Anonymous

    I heard Mike Barnicle may be in the mix as a short term fix until they develop the heir to the heir. Opinions?

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