On CNN, Couric Repeats Snarl at Critics Who Are 'Unhappy, Insecure, Vitriolic People'

On CNN’s Reliable Sources on Sunday, CBS anchor Katie Couric unloaded on her critics again as “a lot of unhappy, insecure, vitriolic people out there.” She claimed to feel bad that they would waste their time offering critiques of her work.

KURTZ: Some of the early criticism, you know, turned kind of personal, and is a woman really right for evening news anchor? And I just wonder whether that was a painful period for you at all?

COURIC: I mean, you know, listen, it's not a lot of fun being pummeled in the press. But on the other hand, I've always had enough confidence in my abilities and my work to know that sometimes there are larger issues at work here about the role of women in society and, you know, sort of -- I didn't really take it that personally. I think that there are a lot of unhappy, sort of insecure, vitriolic people out there, and I always sort of feel bad for them, that this is how they spend their time.

Couric played the sexism sympathy card again when Kurtz started asking about her varying hair styles (which is an easy way to draw out the complaints), and she even mocked Brian Williams from her former network, NBC:

KURTZ: We're going to put up some pictures of you over the years, and I'm going to ask you whether the you think at all a factor in your recent success could be this new hairstyle.

COURIC: I don't know. You know, you should ask Charlie Gibson about how he's changed his part a little bit, or how Brian looks more tan on the air. I really don't know, Howie.

Earlier, when the interview first turned to her recent bump up in the ratings, Couric joked that CNN's ratings weren't so hot:

KURTZ: I think that's something we need to explore further. You've been getting some pretty good press lately for your work on the "CBS Evening News." You're still in third place, but the ratings have ticked up a little bit. After two and a half years in the anchor chair, why do you think it's taken so long?

COURIC: Well, I think by many people's standards, that wouldn't be taking so long at all. I think these things move glacially, actually, and viewer habits are pretty firmly entrenched.

KURTZ: Right.

COURIC: You know, I know it's been taking you a while for you to get a big audience on CNN.

KURTZ: It's taken a little while. (Laughter)

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis