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TV Notes: 7/30/02

Tuesday, July 30, 2002

Couric's concerns

"Today" co-host Katie Couric says restraint is not necessarily in the vocabulary of television network executives but is hoping the networks will be sensitive in putting together their special programs marking the first anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks.

"I think that you do have to be careful about your story selection, how it's done," Couric said. "Because, I think you do run the risk of just giving people too much of a story that is just too devastating for them to watch.

"I think if it's done thoughtfully and well ... it is a democracy. People don't have to watch it."

NBC's Couric says it only makes sense for the networks to remember the terrorist attacks, but she does have a concern.

"I think it's one of the most historic, obviously the most tragic events this country has ever seen," Couric said. "I think, in a way, to focus a lot of attention, particularly on that day, is completely appropriate. What I do worry about are the families who were directly affected. I know I've talked to some of them who say they're not going to turn on the television that day or that week."

(Associated Press)

Governor on 'Leno'

Tonight, Gov. Mark Schweiker will discuss the Quecreek mine rescue with Jay Leno on NBC's "The Tonight Show." The near-fatal accident is under an investigation ordered by Schweiker.

Giving her 'All'

Kelly Ripa is denying a report in the New York Post that she plans to quit "All My Children" when her contract expires in December and focus on "Live With Regis and Kelly." " 'All My Children' has been and will continue to be a big part of my life," Ripa responded in a statement. "I hope to continue to appear as Hayley Santos for many years to come."


Traficant swears on MSNBC

A profanity used by ousted Ohio Rep. James Traficant in an interview with Don Imus was excised from Imus' radio show Monday but slipped past censors during the MSNBC simulcast.

The former congressman, expelled from the House of Representatives last week, was talking to Imus about his case when he suggested the FBI and IRS could "go ... themselves."

Imus' radio audience couldn't hear the profanity because it was bleeped out during a seven-second delay before airing.

"That'll be enough of James Traficant," Imus said. "Clearly, he's been drinking."

MSNBC airs three hours of Imus' show on weekday mornings. When he's in the studio, the network has the seven-second delay that is commonly used to prevent such occurrences. But when Imus is broadcasting from a remote location, as he was Monday, the delay is unavailable, MSNBC spokeswoman Cheryl Daly said.

Despite the outburst, Traficant stayed on the line and Imus returned to him. Imus said he couldn't use such language, and Traficant said, "it's in the dictionary."

The colorful ex-congressman is to be sentenced today on bribery, racketeering and tax evasion charges.

"Let's move on," Imus said. "They are going to sentence you tomorrow. How much do you think you'll get?"

CLICK! Traficant hung up.

In a later interview with MSNBC's Rick Sanchez, Traficant suggested that he might run for president while behind bars as a candidate of the America First party.


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