Live Blogging: Senator Ted Kennedy Passes Away…
I don’t know who was first but all the nets have been covering the passing of Ted Kennedy tonight. CNN was simulcasting CNN International at first but then switched over to CNN US with John Roberts picking up the coverage. MSNBC has Christina Brown anchoring its coverage with Brian Williams and Tom Brokaw phoning in. FNC had Ainsley Earhardt anchoring the coverage but the network has inexplicably dropped coverage in favor of joining a Glenn Beck repeat in progress…
Update 2: FNC is back from tape covering it again. What is it with this network and late night breaking news? It did something similar with the Continental/Colgan plane crash in Buffalo earlier this year.
Update 3: FNC is back to Beck again. CNN and MSNBC still live.
Update 4: CNN has a live shot of Hyannis Port, Massachusetts in a split screen. But nothing’s happening…
Update 5: FNC come out of tape again with Earhardt talking to Fred Barnes. We should start a drinking game. Take a drink whenever FNC goes back to tape. On second thought, I don’t have that much booze. Seriously though, this network is supposed to be the #1 cable news network. It’s a major disservice to its viewers to abuse them this way. I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that some tuned to other networks for coverage. The network is displaying “America’s News HQ” in its lower thirds. Considering what’s been going on, it’s a hollow boast.
Update 6: MSNBC has Keith Olbermann phoning in. David Gregory is also phoning in.
Update 7: FNC goes to commercial “we’re going to gather our thoughts” as Ainsley Earhardt said. Ooookay. An emailer sends this in…
FNC seems the least prepared for this, once the news broke MSNBC and CNN via CNN International have been live. FNC did quick 2 to 10min reports at 1:30am, 2am and 2:30am then went back to tape. The did not go with full live coverage till 2:50am.
FNC returned from commercial and Earhardt read a statement from Governor Arnold Schwarzenneger and then said this…
I’m going to be talking with the control room because we are flying by the seat of our pants. Rick where are we going next?
An emailer writes…
I don’t know if this will top Cheryl Casone’s coverage of the passing of William Renquist on MSNBC but it’s getting close.
It’s not that similar to MSNBC’s horrid Rehnquist coverage of a few years back. There’s a major difference. I heard from a trusted source that Casone was dropped by the network immediately thereafter with a “do not admit” sign with her picture posted at the Secaucus security gate. Earhardt won’t get similar treatment. For the record, I thought Casone was a convenient scapegoat when the problem was poor execution by the night staff at MSNBC.
Update 8: Wow. FNC can’t stop hard breaks? They just interrupted an interview because Earhardt said they were up against a hard break. Wow. That’s bad.
Update 9: CNN is doggedly keeping that live camera on Hyannis Port which is still showing…nothing but cops milling around.
Update 10: MSNBC wakes up David Shuster for a phone in…
Update 11: FNC goes to commercial again. Earhardt said that on the other side they’ll be simulcasting some local Boston coverage.
Update 12: MSNBC has D.C. Bureau Chief Mark Whitaker live via satellite. This says a lot. It means Whittaker is probably co-ordinating the network’s coverage…
Update 13: Kiran Chetry joins Roberts on the air at CNN. Gonna be a lonnnng morning…
Update 14: FNC goes to WFXT for local coverage…
Update 15: Alex Witt takes over on MSNBC at 4 am. MSNBC also is periodically showing a live shot at Hyannis Port of cops milling around. Meanwhile over on CNN, Roberts and Chetry aren’t on the American Morning set. They’re in the CNN newsroom where reporters do live reports.
Update 16: Witt is interviewing Matthews and Olbermann by phone. Two words: No Doze.
Update 17: FNC re-running Bret Baier’s canned Kennedy Obit. Yet again.
Update 18: An eagle eyed emailer notes something that slipped past me…
CNN coverage still being fed from CNN International on CNN. That’s why the background of the CNN logo is white and the globe is above it plus CNNi has the same coverage on. CNN HD still has the HD side bars so they have not switched to HD from NYC yet.
Update 19: FNC has Caroline Schively reporting live via satellite from Washington D.C.
Update 20: CNN’s Hyannis Port live camera, which had been showing noting but cops milling around, now has a reporter from WCBB talking about what’s (not) going on…while cops mill around in the background.
Update 21: FNC ran something that looked like a DNC video that featured Kennedy. It looks like footage from the Democratic convention last year when it wasn’t sure Kennedy wouldn’t be able to make the event. Then FNC came back to Earhardt and then the phone rang next to her and Earhardt killed it and said, “Excuse me…live television. The phone’s ringing to uh I guess pass along some information.”
Update 22: Alex Witt interviewing Norah O’Donnell via satellite on MSNBC.
Update 23: CNN US has taken over the coverage from CNNI. American Morning set is live but Roberts and Chetry are still in the CNN Newsroom. They’re having some satellite glitches with Joe Johns though. CNN goes to John King. King’s looked better I must say.
Update 24: FNC continues its commercial-a-thon coverage. I know News Corp. took it on the chin last quarter but couldn’t they sacrifice a few bucks?
Update 25: Earhardt comes out of break and trips all over Kennedy’s first name. Earhardt: “It’s been a crazy night. A long night.” No kidding.
Update 26: Lower third taglines – CNN: Sen. Edward Kennedy Dies. MSNBC: Remembering Ted Kennedy. FNC: Doesn’t have one yet. It is putting up a graphic picture of Kennedy with “1932-2009″ under it.
Update 27: Morning Joe comes on at 5 am. FNC has not started Fox and Friends yet.
Update 28: Website check…
Update 29: MSNBC has already whipped up an open for the special coverage complete with somber yet respectful music.
Update 30: FNC is running that DNC Kennedy tribute. Yet again.
Update 31: Earhardt, according to a commenter said, “‘In spite of his political views, he was a great American.”
Update 32: FNC switches to Fox and Friends with Brian Kilmeade around 5:20 am. Kilmeade praises work of Earhardt. And with that I’m calling it a night. Blogging resumes when I wake up.