Is Covering State Like Watching Paint Dry?

condirice.jpgAre the television networks giving up on the State Department, even though Condi Rice is now doing TV interviews on her exercise routine?

Harry Jaffe examines the recent reshuffling that has left ABC and CNN without correspondents at State.

CNN bureau chief David Bohrman tells Jaffe: “State as its own beat was not getting on the air every day. Though the secretary of State is a fascinating person, stories about her were falling into the White House coverage. We can cover it without a full-time correspondent.”

Then there’s the “Blame Sean McCormack Faction”: “The State Department is not great at working the media,” says a TV reporter. “The briefings are dry. And diplomats are secretive by nature, more so than Pentagon officials.”

For now the beat is the province of the off-airs: CNN’s Elise Labott, NBC’s Libby Leist, CBS’s Charlie Wolfson, and Fox’s Teri Schultz.

The irony, of course, is that Condi will be ABC’s guest at Prom on Saturday.