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Uma Pitch Hits

Reported by Nancy - July 19, 2004 -

... & doesn't do a bad job of it. She avoided a lot of the typical FNL anchors' tics & tricks (breathless tone, raised eyebrows, etc) & managed to convey a note of seriousness for much of the morning show.

For example, at 11:02am EDT, she interviewed Phil Anderson ("specialist in homeland security") about security measures for the upcoming national political conventions. Taking her cue from Anderson, who was low-key & pragmatic, she confined her questions to straightforward issues, like random searches of passengers on public transportation. This was in stark contrast to Fox's graphic hype of the story -- an introductory WAR ON TERROR banner, followed by banners announcing TERROR TACTICS & a quote from Tom Ridge about planning for "the worst".

Later, at 11:24am EDT, she interviewed Rich Davis ("Dem strategist") & Rick Reed ("GOP strategist") about whether the Kerry/Edwards ticket will get a "bounce" from the DNC & what the Bush/Cheney ticket might do to counter that. Both Davis & Reed were articulate & low-key. & Pemmaraju again took her cue from them, allowing both to state their views without the usual Fox interruptions.

Kudos also to Stan Goldman, who at 11:38am EDT filed a report on Amber Frey & the Scott Peterson trial. In reporting that Frey wrote a letter to her father stating that she wants to stay out of the glare of the media, Goldman said "I don't like to editorialize, but ..." & then went on to point out that hiring Gloria Allred as your attorney pretty much guarantees being in the media spotlight. COMMENT: It's the first time I've ever heard a Fox reporter clearly distinguish his or her editorial remarks. Good for Goldman!

Sadly, when David Asman joined Pemmaraju for the latter half of the show, the tone went right downhill, with fluff like Lisa Bernhard interviewing Ashlee Simpson about her new album.