Stations, Networks Primed for Midterm Madness

Bret Baier of Fox News
(Image credit: Fox News)

If the presidential Election Day is the Super Bowl for reporters who cover politics, the midterms represent the NFL’s conference championships. Networks and stations alike are set to cover the big stories November 8 — and thereafter, should the situation call for it.

Showtime got things going with a midterm-themed episode of The Circus called Here Comes the Flood on Sunday, November 6.

On the local level, Fox-owned WAGA Atlanta turned on the midterm coverage Monday, November 7 with the hour-long special Road to November. Races to be covered in the region include the Senate battle between Sen. Raphael Warnock and Herschel Walker and the governor campaign between incumbent Brian Kemp and Dem challenger Stacey Abrams.

Fox’s KRIV Houston posted the 30-minute You Decide 2022 special to the station website and to its YouTube Channel. Greg Groogan anchors.

The Fox group’s streaming net LiveNOW goes live at 5 a.m. ET on Election Day, with station reporters covering the local races.  

NBC’s owned stations will deliver NBC News coverage in prime, while detailing the local races live on their mobile apps and their local FAST channels on Peacock, Samsung TV and Roku. NBCUniversal Local’s LX News begins LXtion 2022 at 6 p.m. ET, with political editor Noah Pransky leading the coverage. He gets assistance from Mackenzie Behm in Pennsylvania and Chase Cain in Florida, among others.  

Gray Television’s streaming news net Local News Live will go live on Gray station sites, OTT platforms and Facebook Live from 7 p.m. until midnight November 8. Gray TV White House correspondent Jon Decker and Local News Live anchor Ryan Piers lead coverage.

Nexstar’s NewsNation coverage will be co-hosted by Chris Cuomo and Leland Vittert. Broadcasting from network headquarters in Chicago, NewsNation begins coverage at 6 p.m. ET and goes until 3 a.m.

CBS News’ America Decides: Campaign ‘22 is anchored at Times Square by Norah O’Donnell, with Gayle King, John Dickerson and Margaret Brennan among those pitching in.

For the first time, CBS News has a Democracy Desk on the set.

Lester Holt, Savannah Guthrie, Chuck Todd and Andrea Mitchell lead coverage at NBC News, with Rachel Maddow, Nicolle Wallace and Joy Reid on MSNBC. CNBC has Shepard Smith while Julio Vaqueiro and Arantxa Loizaga anchor on Noticias Telemundo.

David Muir runs the show at ABC News, with the likes of Linsey Davis, Jonathan Karl, Cecilia Vega and Martha Raddatz helping out.

Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum anchor on Fox News Channel November 8, starting at 6 p.m. ET. America’s Newsroom co-anchor Bill Hemmer analyzes results in real time on the so-called “Bill-Board” throughout Democracy 2022. Fox News’s decision desk will be run by Arnon Mishkin.

CNN will have Anderson Cooper in the 8 p.m. slot and Jake Tapper at 9 p.m. on Election Night, before he shifts to the 4-6 p.m. slot after the election. Chief national correspondent John King will of course be breaking things down state by state. He called the midterms the “most complicated” of the many he’s covered over the decades. “We live in an age of volatility,” King said.

CNN said 35 Senate seats are on the ballot, and all 435 House spots. Plus, 36 out of 50 stations have gubernatorial elections.

Once the madness is over, MSNBC’s Morning Joe will broadcast in front of a live studio audience Wednesday morning, November 9, from Rockefeller Center. That goes from 6 to 10 a.m. ET and Joe Scarborough, Mika Brzezinski and Willie Geist host.

Road to November is a regular weekly show on WAGA. On November 10, it will cover what happened in the surely eventful days before. ■

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.