Nets Drop Programming For President Again

All the broadcast nets dropped regular programming again to carry a press conference on Iraq by President George W. Bush.

NBC's David Gregory asked why the president's announcement of a new, more flexible approach to the war that included a timetable for withdrawl should not be seen, given the unpopularity of the "stay the course" policy, as playing politics just before the election.

The president said his new "benchmark" policy for handing over control of Iraq was not a cut-and-run strategy and that the policy--and by extension the press conference called Wednesday morning--was to convince the nation there was a plan for victory so they would support the war.

Just two weeks ago, virtually all the major media also broke away from regular programming to cover President Bush's news conference on North Korea, fiscal policies and Iraq.

The administration earlier this year essentially declared a new media front in the war, saying it had not done as good a job as the enemy of making its case in the media in the war on terror.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.