Campbell Brown Almost Ready For Primetime, But Primed For Politics

By Chris Ariens Comment

CNN’s Anderson Cooper, John King, Suzanne Malveaux, John Roberts, Campbell Brown, Lou Dobbs, Candy Crowley and Bill Schneider

It has hosted Britney Spears, the Bachelorette and the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition launch party. Tuesday morning New York City’s Gotham Hall hosted a political convention of sorts; a sales pitch for advertisers to buy time or space on CNN and

The Gotham’s ornate marble interior was decked out with CNN’s red, white and blue debate set. Touchscreen computer monitors (set to of course) ringed the room. Even the Election Express bus rolled into town.

CNN/US president Jon Klein promised a balanced, down-the-middle approach to covering politics. “Our bias is we want to seek real answers to problems,” said Klein. “Who else could piss off both Lynne Cheney and Michael Moore in the same year?”

And all the heavy hitters were there: King, Blitzer Cooper, Roberts, the other King, Carville and Begala, and two CNN newcomers: Campbell Brown and Gloria Borger.

In introducing the first of two panels, Larry King asked Brown, “When are you due?” “Christmas Day,” the former NBC anchor responded. As for her paternity: “Campbell was raised by politicians,” said Klein. “She lives and breathes politics.”

And on this morning she also made a bold political prediction, about a growing split in the GOP: “if Evangelicals don’t feel like they can find who they want in [Presidential candidate] Fred Thompson, they clearly aren’t happy about [Rudy] Giuliani and his pro choice position, they may just say ‘you know what we’re going to do this out of principle and run a third party candidate’ which means that Hillary Clinton is likely to be the next President of the United States.”

Brown joined CNN in August with the promise of anchoring a primetime show. She will; in February, just in time for Super Tuesday.

Klein told me he is close to hiring an executive producer for show, perhaps by “the end of the month.” In the meantime, Brown is working on special reports for the network including one about political attack ads. “I think the onslaught has started. In polling people always say how much they hate attack ads, but they are effective.”

CNN’s chief national correspondent John King talking with Anderson Cooper 360 senior EP David Doss.

CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, Paul Begala, Donna Brazile, James Carville, Gloria Borger, Bill Bennett, Amy Holmes, and JC Watts.

CNN’s Michael Ware talking about the impact of the Iraq war on the Presidential election.

(photos/Chris Ariens)