NBC's Chuck Todd: Hillary Clinton Series Is 'Nightmare' for Network

Thursday, 08 Aug 2013 01:24 PM

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The Hillary Clinton mini-series planned by NBC Entertainment could represent a disaster for NBC News, says the network's chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd.

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People fail to realize the split between the two NBC arms, which don't always get along, he said Thursday on MSNBC's "Morning Joe."

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“This is why this mini-series is a total nightmare for NBC News,” Todd said.

His comments came shortly before Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus appeared on the same program to explain his call this week for NBC and CNN to abandon their planned film projects on Clinton.

CNN is planning a documentary on the former secretary of state and, Priebus said, both projects could be viewed conflicts of interest since the networks will be covering Clinton's possible 2016 bid for the presidency.

Todd appeared to agree with that assessment, even though he stressed that there is a "giant firewall" between the news and entertainment divisions of NBC.

"We have nothing to do with [the Clinton mini-series]," he said, referring to news-division coverage of the presidential campaign.

"We know that we’d love probably to be as critical or whatever . . . if [the mini-series] comes out, but there’s nothing we can do about it, and we’re going to only own the negative,” Todd continued. “People are going to see the peacock, and they see NBC, and they see NBC News, and they think, ‘Well, they can’t be that separate.’”

Todd noted that the "two entities are sometimes at war with each other."

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For example, he said, NBC News often has to fight NBC Entertainment to air live news rather than entertainment programming during prime viewing hours.

“The relationship is . . . never great. It's either OK or really bad," he said.

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