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Election Watch: Katie Couric, Offensive Coordinator

Covering her first election day from the CBS News desk, Katie Couric was much more the offensive coordinator than the quarterback, tapping a long lineup of correspondents to give their take from various corners of the country. First up was Bob Schieffer, opening the broadcast in the wingman seat on Couric’s flank. Called the “dean of our team” by Couric, Schieffer stated that nothing was definite until all votes were counted, and said the Democrats nonetheless had a huge lead.

Following Schieffer was Sharyl Attkinsson, her name a nightmare for copyeditors, then Lee Cowan, reporting from a dank Ohio gym that looks like every other “Vote Aqui” polling place in America. Couric offered little commentary, instead opting to dial up the next correspondent. Reporting from Washington on ballot measures such as stem cell research was Sharyn Alfonsi, not to be confused with Sharyl Attkinsson.

(How to get a correspondent gig with CBS News: Have a name that’s impossible to spell.)

At 6:48, there was an ad for the heart medicine Coreg.

The commercial is much funnier when you substitute “Couric” for “Coreg” as the announcer lists the various side effects from taking Coreg.

Couric spent the third act focusing on non-election news around the globe, such as Saddam’s foul mood in Baghdad and a terrorist’s sentencing in London. She then commended the state of Minnesota for its obscenely high voter turnout each election. “That is very impressive,” she lauded.

For a first timer, so was she.

By Mike Malone