It’s a million dollar question- and the answer will really surprise you. Who is the most sought after Sunday show guest in Washington? Bob Schieffer, David Gregory and George Stephanopoulos all agree: Bo the dog.
In a rare joint appearance, the hosts of “Face the Nation,” “Meet the Press” and “This Week” took questions took questions at this month’s CSIS and Texas Christian University Schieffer School of Journalism Dialogue: “A Sunday Show Summit.”
More realistically, the Sunday show hosts said they’d like to book First Lady Michelle Obama. Schieffer pointed out ABC’s get with Hillary Clinton, saying he’d like to interview the Secretary of State. Stephanopoulos returned the compliment, telling Schieffer, Face had the “strongest May” with former Vice President Dick Cheney and former Secretary of State Colin Powell.
Now once they land the guest, how do they get them to talk? “Ask the obvious question,” Schieffer advised. Gregory said sometimes it’s ok to be quiet- “Let them talk,” citing a recent interview with Defense Secretary Robert Gates in which he compared Presidents Bush and Obama for the first time.
We give props to a young freelancer in the audience who asked the panel quite frankly, “How can I be you?” The oldest and most experienced member of the panel, Schieffer, answered that while we don’t know where journalism is going, “there will always be a need for reporters.”
On the future of journalism, all three expressed love for newspapers, but skepticism for their future in print. Gregory referenced Ben Bradlee that there is a “fundamental demand” for newspapers in communities. All agreed whether it was online or in print, it was the information that was most important.
The Internet, the “first avenue that doesn’t have an editor,” as described by Schieffer, puts a “special responsibility” on the mainstream media, Stephanopoulos said. “I feel like an editor,” he said, sifting through blogs for facts every week.
Other topics covered include healthcare (all agree the President needs one domestic achievement soon and that he wants it to be healthcare) and the balance of coverage on politics and the economy during the campaign (all thought mainstream media did a good job, learning and explaining economics and covering an election “historic in every way,” as described by Schieffer).
As for their roles on Sunday mornings, I think even his competitors can agree with Gregory here. “This is still the place to really hear somebody out and learn something.”