MSNBC Breaks News Of Detainee Deal

By Brian 

NBC News and MSNBC were way ahead of other media outlets with the news of a White House-Senate deal on detainee legislation.

“NBC News has learned that there has been a compromise reached between President Bush and Senator McCain on the treatment of terror detainees,” MSNBC anchor Norah O’Donnell said at 2:26pm. Capitol Hill producer Mike Viqueira had the details. had a breaking news banner at the same time.

Fifteen minutes later, Fox News anchor Martha MacCallum said “other networks have reported that there is a deal,” but “we are hearing from our own Jim Angle in the Washington bureau that a deal has not been reached yet.” Oops. FNC’s Shep Smith said the deal was done at 3:11pm.

CNN was even slower. At 4:07pm, correspondent Andrea Koppel said there had been “all kinds of rumors, all kinds of reports out there that a deal has been reached, but according to our sources… they are not there as yet.” MSNBC had broken the news 100 minutes earlier.