Future Today Host Vieira: Why Did Unpopular Cheney Throw Out Pitch?
Has Meredith Vieira started her stint on the Today show early? The future NBC anchor already knows how to ask combative, loaded questions to conservatives. On the April 12 edition of The View, she posed this query to the Vice President:
Vieira: "You know what, I’ve got a question for Vice President Dick Cheney. Given your low approval ratings these days, why would you want to throw out the ceremonial first pitch at the Washington Nationals games yesterday?...He got cheered and he got booed."
Vieira, in a segment that started at 11:05AM EDT, seemed honestly puzzled as to why someone would want to throw out the first pitch on opening day. She continued, "But this is a man we rarely see, so why do you think yesterday he made that decision to go out and throw that ball?"
Elisabeth Hasselback, the show's token Republican, explained that, as a baseball fanatic, she would never turn down such an honor. A perplexed Vieira oddly responded, "Really?...Is it a macho thing, then?" View co-host Barbara Walters quickly let it be know that what disturbed her was not the Vice President at opening day, it was the presence of American troops on the baseball field:
Walters: "You know what kind of bothered me? Because this is a thing when politics- I mean, baseball is a national pastime....But then I was reading, on the field with [Cheney] were three U.S. servicemen, two of whom had been wounded in Iraq and the third who was injured in Afghanistan."
At this point, Walters’ face contorted into a sneer, as if this were the most disgusting thing she had ever heard.(See above picture.) The ABC co-host went on to add:
Walters: "...But I’m not sure they should have been- throw out the ball. But, I mean, to have two wounded- to make it political, that, does that bother anybody?"
Joy Behar agreed that the reason Cheney had the troops around was to get cheap applause. She then made what might be the oddest analogy of the year thus far:
Behar: "These are like, these are like, you know, like putting a baby in front of you when someone is trying to shoot you."
Yes, that could be it, Joy. Or, perhaps more logically, the goal was simply to honor the bravery of the American soldier. The View crew closed out the discussion with a recap of the ‘hardships’ Barbara Walters faced when she jumped networks and arrived at ABC. The conversation turned to a contrast between Walters’ treatment and that of Katie Couric. Vieira seemed angry that a recent Newsweek cover questioned, gently, whether Couric would be a success:
[Regarding the Newsweek cover with Couric] Vieira: "...I’ve seen with Katie it says, ‘Will she shine at night and who will watch?’ Which is obnoxious."
Is it obnoxious to wonder if someone like Ms. Couric can go from talking about the latest fashions in scarfs to anchoring a nightly national newscast? Whatever the answer, it sounds like Meredith has already adapted her interviewing style to fit the standards of Today.