NBC Hypes 'Often-Scrutinized' Hillary's 'Uncharacteristically Revealing' Interview

Ann Curry trumpeted that Hillary Clinton supposedly gave a "uncharacteristically revealing interview" to People magazine on Wednesday's NBC Nightly News. Kelly O'Donnell filed a gushing report about how Mrs. Clinton apparently "has plenty to say," and spotlighted the former secretary of state's new book.

O'Donnell later zeroed-in on the upcoming arrival of Clinton's grandchild and asserted that this would give a "new dimension to her already well-known, often-scrutinized political identity." She also turned to a Washington Post editor, who played up that the former Democratic senator might gain a political advantage from the baby: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

KELLY O'DONNELL: From admitting to totally binge-viewing the political drama House of Cards, Clinton's free time is about to change – a first grandchild expected this fall.

ANNE KORNBLUT, WASHINGTON POST DEPUTY NATIONAL EDITOR: Look, babies are special political creatures. So, I think it will certainly provide a whole new set of images we've never seen of her before.

Curry introduced O'Donnell's report with her "uncharacteristically revealing" claim about the People magazine cover story, and underlined that Clinton "allowed a photographer in her home, and talked for the first time in years about Monica Lewinsky; and also, about her health and the decision she says she still has to make."

The NBC correspondent led the segment with the "plenty to say" line, and outlined that the former Obama administration official was "ramping up her already supercharged visibility" with her book and the new interview. O'Donnell spent the bulk of her report on five excerpts from the People magazine article, where Clinton commented about a potential 2016 presidential run; concerns about her health; the Monica Lewinsky scandal; and other issues.

O'Donnell later zeroed in on the former first lady's apparent love of House of Cards, as well as the factor of her daughter Chelsea's child, which will be born later in 2014. She concluded her report with her assertion that Mrs. Clinton has an "often-scrutinized political identity."

The full transcript of Kelly O'Donnell's report from Wednesday's NBC Nightly News:


ANN CURRY: Tonight, an uncharacteristically revealing interview from Hillary Clinton, who allowed a photographer in her home, and talked for the first time in years about Monica Lewinsky; and also, about her health and the decision she says she still has to make.

We get more tonight on this from NBC's Kelly O'Donnell.

KELLY O'DONNELL (voice-over): Ramping up her already supercharged visibility-

HILLARY CLINTON: Thank you; thank you. (audience cheers and applauds)

O'DONNELL: Hillary Clinton has plenty to say.

CLINTON: Stay tuned.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN 1 (off-camera): (laughs) We will.

CLINTON: When I know, you'll know.

O'DONNELL: A new book, 'Hard Choices,' out next week with own its trailer of sorts-

CLINTON: My views about what we needed to do to restore American leadership.

O'DONNELL: And on newsstands this Friday, she's on the cover of People magazine. But on that one big question, Clinton only offers more tea leaves to read: 'I'm certainly in the camp that says we need to break down that highest, hardest glass ceiling in American politics.' A first woman president: 'I would love to see that happen, but I'll just have to make my own decision about what I think is right for me.'

Clinton turns a question about her own health, the fall, blood clot, and concussion she suffered in 2012 into an anecdote about the athleticism of 44-year-old Republican Congressman Paul Ryan – asking him at the inauguration, 'Have you ever had a concussion? Oh, yeah – three at least. I said, were they serious? He said, one was really serious.'

People magazine's Betsy Gleick.

BETSY GLEICK, PEOPLE MAGAZINE DEPUTY EDITOR: She says, hey! Paul Ryan's had lots of concussions. So, she's immediately deflecting all of this, kind of, noise around these health questions for herself.

O'DONNELL: On Monica Lewinsky, Clinton takes the asked and answered approach: 'I certainly have moved on,' adding, 'I'm not going to comment on what did or didn't happen. I think everybody needs to look to the future.'

Asked about her husband's health, she acknowledged President Clinton has a hand tremor, but says he is not too thin, and has enormous energy.

KEVIN SPACEY (from Netflix series "House of Cards"): Welcome back-

O'DONNELL: From admitting to totally binge-viewing the political drama 'House of Cards,' Clinton's free time is about to change – a first grandchild expected this fall.

ANNE KORNBLUT, WASHINGTON POST DEPUTY NATIONAL EDITOR: Look, babies are special political creatures. So, I think it will certainly provide a whole new set of images we've never seen of her before.

O'DONNELL: Adding a new dimension to her already well-known, often-scrutinized political identity. Kelly O'Donnell, NBC News, Washington.

Matthew Balan
Matthew Balan
Matthew Balan is a news analyst at Media Research Center