Battle for Sanford Interview: ‘Today’ vs. ‘GMA’

By Andrew Gauthier 

Media Decoder

In e-mail messages sent in pursuit of an interview with Gov. Mark Sanford of South Carolina in the wake of his disappearance from the state in late June, ABC News correspondent Jake Tapper called a report on NBCs “Today” show about Mr. Sanford “slimy” and “pretty insulting,” apparently for raising questions about the governors absence.

Mr. Tapper later called representatives of NBC News to apologize for comments he had made. Was it all another chapter in the ongoing battle between “Today” and ABCs “Good Morning America”?

An ABC News spokesman, Jeffrey Schneider, said that Mr. Tapper had a previous personal relationship with the governor and was trying to help ABC News producers. “Good Morning America” is the chief competitor to “Today” and the two programs often engage in ferocious booking wars. More…