In Profile: Holt, Todd

By A.J. Katz Comment

Meet the Press moderator Chuck Todd and NBC Nightly News anchor Lester Holt are getting the in-profile treatment this week.

Todd spoke with Forbes about all of the things he’s up to these days— Moderator of Meet the Press, host of MTP Daily on MSNBC, host of the new streaming news program on Peacock, Meet the Press Reports, and host of the Meet the Press podcast.

Forbes writes:

“I think it’s been really healthy for our brains to do Meet the Press Reports, versus the Sunday show versus the daily show,” Todd says. “When you look at all three types of shows, the beauty of what we’re doing with Meet the Press Reports is what I see as really Meet the Press Magazine, right? Our version of a magazine type of show.

You want to make sure you’re producing something that has some staying power. That is bingeable six months later and still relevant to somebody who’s watching. It is hard to reorient your brain when you’re on an hourly news cycle, or the minute-by-minute news cycle that Trump has created over the last five years. I do think it has sapped a lot of creativity, because we’ve been chasing our tails. Every time you think you have a minute to breathe, to dive deep on something, Trump does something … whatever. Unprecedented, and then it’s stop the presses, throw yourself into that.”

Holt spoke with the Associated Press (picked up by USA Today) about his highly-regarded end-of-broadcast commentaries, which the writer says represents “an unusual departure for network evening newscasts that have more than a half century’s track record of playing it straight.”

The AP writes:

Holt’s essays, many of them pleas for unity in troubled times, can seem mild to viewers used to the rhetorical warfare of cable news. He says he’s filling a need for voices of empathy in public life.

“When I started doing them I wondered, ‘have I crossed a line? Is the audience going to reject it?’” Holt said. “I haven’t felt that. I try to honor my role and not overstep my bounds as a journalist.”

“I try to avoid the obvious third rails,” Holt told The Associated Press. “Nothing will drown out a message more quickly than if people try to pick it apart for some kind of internal motivations and that’s not what I want to do.”

“Is there a little ‘Kumbaya’ in there?” Holt said. “Maybe there is. But I think sometimes we even need that.”

 

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