During a discussion on Tuesday's CBS Evening News about John Kerry's seeming insult of troops in Iraq, anchor Katie Couric invoked a deep voice as she mimicked an imaginary possible Republican ad of the future: “John Kerry insults the troops. Do we really want the Dems to take over?” Couric offered her impersonation, an odd persona to be taken on by a broadcast network anchor, during a segment with former Clinton Press Secretary Mike McCurry and former Bush Communications Director Nicolle Wallace. McCurry, confident the media will quickly move on, had predicted: "By this time tomorrow night people won't remember what John Kerry said because the story line will move on and they're be talking about Iraq and how badly the war is going...” Couric turned to Wallace and set up her impersonation of the announcer in an anti-Democratic ad: "Will this really be forgotten by this time tomorrow? Do you think Republican operatives are putting this comment into political campaigns all over the country?” (Full exchange follows)
At a campaign even on Monday in California for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Phil Angelides, Kerry remarked: "You know, education, if you make the most of it, you study hard, you do your homework and you make an effort to be smart, you can do well. If you don't, you get stuck in Iraq" CBS, as well as ABC and NBC, led Tuesday with the White House criticism of Kerry for ridiculing the troops. Kerry maintained it was a mangled joke about Bush bing too stupid to avoid getting mired in Iraq.
A portion of Couric's session with McCurry (from DC) and Wallace (in studio) on the October 31 CBS Evening News:
Katie Couric: “Mike, how annoyed are Democrats that John Kerry got off-message with this?”
Mike McCurry: “Look, by this time tomorrow night people won't remember what John Kerry said because the story line will move on and they're be talking about Iraq and how badly the war is going and why we need a new direction. So, Iraq in the news is not a bad thing for Democrats.”
Couric to Nicolle Wallace: “Will this really be forgotten by this time tomorrow? Do you think Republican operatives are putting these, this comment into political campaigns all over the country -- [Couric switched to deep voice as her head leaned down] 'John Kerry insults the troops. Do we really want the Dems to take over?'”
Nicolle Wallace: “Yeah, I don't think that's happening and I agree John Kerry will probably be off the airwaves by tomorrow night...”