Covering Tim Russert’s Death

tim_russert_hi.jpgThe online and print coverage of Tim Russert’s sudden death, while slightly more restrained than the wall-to-wall cable coverage that went on for the better part of Friday (not to mention the entire half hour of NBC’s Nightly News) was still widespread. The NYT’s Caucus liveblogged Friday’s cable coverage (garnering 2700 comments in the process) and The New Yorker’s David Remnick, in an unusual move, had posted a “Talk of the Town” esque piece on the magazine’s website by Saturday.

The story is still dominating much of the Monday morning media coverage. After the jump, an overview of who’s saying what, including speculation as to who might take over Russert’s position as host of Meet the Press.


With Tim Russert’s Death, NBC News Must Replace a Man of Many Roles (NYT)
The sudden death of Tim Russert has left the management of NBC News, for the moment at least, at a loss to contemplate how to replace him. Russert was not only the moderator of Meet the Press, he was also the chief of NBC’s Washington bureau and NBC’s public face on politics, appearing regularly on the network’s full range of programs, including the Today show, and NBC’s Nightly News. LAT: Speculation on possible successors centers on three on-air personalities already under contract to NBC: David Gregory, the former White House correspondent recently given his own MSNBC show, Race for the White House; Chris Matthews, host of MSNBC’s long-running Hardball; and Joe Scarborough, the former congressman and host of Morning Joe on MSNBC. Politico: On a memorial edition of NBC’s Meet the Press, moderator Tim Russert was remembered in his studio as a friend of politicians who prepared rigorously for the powerful show and was “offended” when they didn’t do the same. WSJ: Russert will be remembered for his remarkable career. But I’ll remember him as the famous journalist who gave counsel to an intern, and who told me to “get out there and do it,” writes Robert Costa. Time: It’s a measure of his success as a journalist that few people remember Tim Russert was once the Democratic Lee Atwater — the smartest, toughest, most instinctive political aide around. FishbowlDC: Luke Russert, Tim Russert’s only son, is a guest this morning on the Today show. NYT: Recalling Russert as a political operative in New York. WaPo: Tom Shales on “the smile that lit up journalism.” New Yorker: Russert was defined as much by what he was not as by what he was. He was not lazy or lax, he was not an ideologue or a cynic. Beyond his family, Russert’s passion was politics, and he cared enough about the game to try to keep it, and its players, honest, writes David Remnick. USAT: The show is expected to name an interim host sometime after Russert’s funeral. Variety: Asked about the different names to surface, another NBC source said “no way” that a cable personality would be considered for the job because the broadcast news division wants to keep itself “pristine,” meaning it wants to maintain a clear line between NBC News and what it sees as increasingly outspoken viewpoints that drive much of cable news, including MSNBC. Forbes: “For all of the things he did — and he was a prolific news analyst — what people will always most remember as his magnum opus is sitting around on election night, making his predictions and providing analysis,” says Robert Thompson, director of the Center for the Study of Popular Television at Syracuse University. TVNewser: Complete Tim Russert coverage.