David Gregory’s time on ‘Meet the Press’ is almost up
By Emily Smith
July 23, 2014 | 1:08am
David Gregory’s time is nearly up at “Meet the Press,” sources told Page Six
, and he could be replaced as moderator of the nation’s longest-running TV show soon after the November midterm elections.
While NBC News President Deborah Turness has publicly supported the embattled Gregory, there are serious concerns about the losing battle to turn around the show’s sinking ratings.
Viewership is down a whopping 43 percent compared to when Gregory ascended to the moderator’s chair in December 2008, after the death of Tim Russert. The show finished in third place behind CBS’s “Face the Nation” and ABC’s “This Week” in the second quarter of 2014.
An NBC source said, “The discussion is whether to make a change before or after the midterm elections. Just after the midterms would give the new moderator time to settle in.”
According to insiders, NBC political director and chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd is the rightful heir to Gregory, but he has not been officially offered the job.
Other names said to be in the frame include “Today” anchor Savannah Guthrie, who comes from a political background but is unlikely to be released from the flagship morning show where she’s hugely popular. Guthrie is also due to give birth to her first child next month and will return to “Today” after maternity leave.
MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” team Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski have also been said be angling for a Sunday slot, but NBC insiders said there are concerns about putting a partisan host in charge of “Meet the Press,” as Scarborough is a former Republican congressman.
After the Washington Post recently reported that NBC had commissioned a “psychological consultant” to interview Gregory’s wife and friends, NBC publicly stood by Gregory, who denounced the psychologist claim as “gossip reporting gone wild.”
An NBC spokesperson told us Tuesday night, “We heard the same false rumors and suggest you take them with a grain of salt, as we did.”