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Report: NBC Courted Jon Stewart for "Meet the Press"

Report: NBC Courted Jon Stewart for "Meet the Press"

By Adam O'Neal - October 9, 2014

NBC News executives held negotiations with comedian Jon Stewart to become the next host of “Meet the Press,” according to a report in New York magazine.  

“They were ready to back the Brink’s truck up,” said one source, who added that the network was willing to pay “anything” to bring the host of Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show” to NBC. 

Offering one of the most highly regarded political reporting jobs to a comedian may seem counter-intuitive, but the New York magazine story argued that “it makes sense that NBC would make a run at Stewart,” citing his “loyal, young audience” and formidable interviewing skills. 

Ultimately, the attempts to hire the satirist “were unsuccessful. Stewart, whose Comedy Central contract extends through next year, declined NBC’s aggressive courtship.” Instead, the network elevated White House correspondent Chuck Todd to the seat vacated by David Gregory, who stepped down amid declining ratings for a Sunday morning show that was once dominant. 

Spokespeople for NBC and Stewart did not comment on the report. Shortly after the news broke, Todd tweeted, “If it’s Sunday, it's your moment of zen.”

Adam O'Neal is a political reporter for RealClearPolitics. He can be reached at aoneal@realclearpolitics.com. Follow him on Twitter @RealClearAdam.

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