Documents requested in the Mark Sanford debacle have revealed this correspondence between Meet the Press host David Gregory and Sanford’s staff:
Look, you guys have a lot of pitches.. I get it and I know this is a tough situation… Let me say just this is a place to have a wider conversation with some context about not just the personal but also the future for him and the party… This situation only exacerbates the issue of how the GOP recovers when another national leader suffers a setback like this. So coming on Meet the Press allows you to frame the conversation how you really want to… and then move on. You can see you have done your interview and then move on. Consider it.
Is this what Mr. Gregory considers journalism? The American people deserve an apology for this display of utter brown-nosing, pandering, and overt bias on Mr. Gregory’s part. This is an insult to Tim Russert, and in the context of this weekend’s loss of the great Walter Cronkite, an insult to all those who once considered news to be about getting to the truth, not currying favor with the powerful.
NBC, Meet the Press, and David Gregory should be absolutely ashamed of themselves. The American people deserve better.
Where is our apology, Mr. Gregory?
UPDATE: Mr. Gregory was kind enough to respond to my email, clarifying his remarks:
Thanks for the email. I wasn’t promising a friendly forum. I was offering a fair forum to discuss his problems. I meant my forum allows him to have the time to discuss the situation in a fullsome way, to say what he wants and move on. I appreciate your sensitivity on this. It’s a fair question to ask. I have never pulled punches in an interview.
Moderator, Meet the Press
So take from that what you will.