President Obama Speaks About Storms, National Security, But Tepid Interest From Affiliates

By Alex Weprin 

Around 3:15 PM, President Obama spoke about the storms causing havoc in the Southeast U.S. as well as his plans for a new Secretary of Defense and CIA Director.

The statement drew a somewhat tepid response from local affiliates, despite special reports being offered by the network news divisions.

In New York only WABC carried the statement (pictured above), and cut away after only a few minutes. A quick search on TVEyes shows ABC affiliates across the country also broadcast the special report. The flagship CBS and NBC station in New York, WCBS and WNBC, did not carry it.

Yesterday, President Obama joked with reporters (and specifically NBC’s Chuck Todd) by saying:

“Let me comment first of all on the fact that I can’t get the networks to break in on all kinds of other discussions. I was just back there listening to Chuck [Todd]. He said, ‘it is amazing he is not going to be talking about national security’. I would not have the networks break in if I was talking about that, Chuck, and you know it.”

The cable networks, of course, covered it mostly in full: