In June, 2015 NBC’s Katy Tur had a choice to make: be the lead correspondent on the Donald Trump campaign, or return to London as an NBC News foreign correspondent. She chose Trump. That meant canceling a long-planned vacation to Sicily with her then-boyfriend “a handsome Frenchman,” she writes in her new book. The relationship didn’t last. 500 days later Donald Trump was president.
Tur, now an MSNBC anchor, recounts those 500 days in Unbelievable: My Front-Row Seat to the Craziest Campaign in American History.
NBC News Chairman Andy Lack (above, with Tur and her fiancé CBS’s Tony Dokoupil) hosted a book party for Tur tonight at the Seagram Building’s The Pool. “I have some breaking news,” Lack announced to the crowd. “Katy’s editor said this book is going to be ‘a monster.'”
“All of us here are so proud and so excited,” said Lack who also wrote a verse in her honor, which ended like this: “And one thing became especially clear to all of us who are gathered here. We’re crazy in love with Lady Tur and there’s just nothing fake about her. So raise a glass to the best of class, the unbelievable Katy Tur.”
“This is only possible because of everybody at NBC News,” added Tur. “The only reason I was so terrified of losing the Trump beat was because the other Trump reporters, the other reporters in politics were amazing and they were incredible competition. I know that if I didn’t keep my game high, I would’ve lost that in a second.”
Dozens of Tur’s NBC colleagues packed the room, including NBCU CEO Steve Burke and NBC News president Noah Oppenheim; Lester Holt, who arrived after Nightly News, along with his wife Carol Hagen Holt; Savannah Guthrie and husband Michael Feldman; and Today ep Don Nash and anchors Hoda Kotb and Al Roker. Roker told us he’ll be up early tracking Hurricane Maria and its expected disastrous impact on Puerto Rico. Also, NBC News correspondents Craig Melvin, Anne Thompson, Cynthia McFadden, Ayman Mohyeldin and Harry Smith and MSNBC anchor Ali Velshi.
And because this is U.N. week here in New York, many of Tur’s D.C. colleagues also turned out, including Andrea Mitchell, Hallie Jackson, Peter Alexander, Kristin Welker and Ali Vitali, who was the embed on the Trump campaign. Tur’s MSNBC ep Omnika Thompson was here, along with Tur’s campaign producer Anthony Terrell, as was Morning Joe producer Jesse Rodriguez (who had a very long day considering this morning’s 10th anniversary special).
Also, CNN’s Brian Stelter and wife NY1’s Jamie Stelter, NY1’s Pat Kiernan, Bloomberg’s Megan Murphy and new NBC Newser Claire Atkinson.
Tur told us she’ll be getting that long-awaited vacation next month when she and her fiancé, CBS News correspondent Tony Dokoupil, elope “somewhere in the middle of Utah.”
If she’s learned anything during her 500 days with Trump it’s America first. Sicily can wait.