Brokaw on Olbermann, MTP’s Future and McCain

By SteveK 

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In a wide-ranging profile of NBC News’ Tom Brokaw, as well as an analysis of his Meet the Press moderation thus far, the New York Times’ Jacques Steinberg delves into a variety of topics.

Brokaw tells Steinberg he “advocated” for a modification to the anchor duties of MSNBC hosts Keith Olbermann and Chris Matthews during election nights. His reasoning came with praise for the Countdown host. “Keith is an articulate guy who writes well and doesn’t make his arguments in a ‘So’s your old mother’ kind of way,” he said. “The mistake was to think he could fill both roles. The other mistake was to think he wouldn’t be tempted to use the anchor position to engage in commentary. That’s who he is.”

As Brokaw told TVNewser in St. Paul, he echoed the claim he would be ending his Meet the Press moderating duties shortly after November’s election. Steinberg quotes a “person who had been briefed on the proposal” regarding what will happen after Brokaw leaves the chair: “[NBC] is leaning toward an ensemble of hosts that would be led by Chuck Todd, NBC’s political director, and include David Gregory.”

Click continued to see how Brokaw has “conducted some shuttle diplomacy” between NBC News and the McCain campaign…

As has been written before, Brokaw told of the McCain campaign’s initial hesitance to participate in a debate involving an NBC News anchor.

But Brokaw tells Steinberg he is “friendly” with Sen. John McCain, and he reached out to the candidate during last week’s Clinton Global Initiative (CGI). “We’re going to get him. I don’t know exactly where or when,” he said of a McCain MTP appearance.

Brokaw also brought up the idea of an appearance on the program when he met Gov. Sarah Palin at the CGI. “I told her, ‘I’m the only one in this business who ever had Susan Butcher as a house guest,'” Mr. Brokaw said, referring to the Iditarod champion, who died in 2006. “Susan Butcher is to Alaska what Cal Ripken is to Baltimore.”