CNN’s Howard Kurtz talks to new MSNBC contributors and former Obama staffers Robert Gibbs and David Axelrod for CNN.com.
Despite their partisan pasts, both men say that they will not be acting as Obama surrogates, but as fair observers , leveraging their experiences on the campaign trail and in the White House.
Viewers will have to decide whether the analysis they give is truly fair, or tinged with a partisan filter.
Gibbs tells me he sees his job “as a political analyst and as someone who has been in the room during important meetings and when big decisions are made who can convey what that’s like to viewers. I don’t see it either as being a cheerleader for the president or as a spokesman for the administration’s point of view.”
Axelrod also sees himself taking a different approach: “My role is not that of a surrogate, but an analyst and commentator. I’m proud of my work for and with the president. But in this role, I will offer observations, based on my experience over 35 years in journalism and politics, and will call them as I see them.” He added: “I’d also note that NBC and MSNBC have, on their roster of analysts, both Republicans and Democrats.”