Hume Defends Convention Coverage

Too little coverage of the political conventions this time around? That was one of the knocks from Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry after his party's dwindling time in the network spotlight.

Too much, Britt Hume, anchor of Fox News' Special Report with Brit Hume, tells B&C. At least too much emphasis on what have become friction-free commercials crafted "to take advantage of the TV coverage we give them." Hume would like to reduce the emphasis on conventions but thinks TV networks are locked in by their historical coverage.

So, how would Hume cover them?

"We'd make sure we had enough people who cover the candidate to deal with it. But I doubt we'd anchor out of there. Having given one convention a certain amount of coverage, we're sort of obliged to give the other one a similar amount. We made a decision in Boston that we'd go with our regularly scheduled shows. The anchors would be at the convention but wouldn't be the only focus. We're going to do it that way again."

What about the criticism that Fox undercovered the Dems?

"It's marginal. What we're talking about are a couple of speeches that didn't air live in their entirety. But they did air. If we decided we did not want to air all of Clinton, that would be a problem. Or shortchanged Edwards or Kerry or Mrs. Kerry."

For more of Hume's interview with B&C's John Higgins, see the Aug. 23 issue of B&C.