Couric voted in for CBS' Election 2008


NEW YORK -- CBS News said Monday that "CBS Evening News" anchor/managing editor Katie Couric will headline its Election 2008 coverage.

Couric will anchor the political coverage not only on the "CBS Evening News" but also throughout the network in special programming. She also will anchor the Dec. 10 debate in Los Angeles among Democratic presidential candidates, the last sanctioned one before the primaries and caucuses.

Also taking key roles in the campaign coverage will be chief Washington correspondent Bob Schieffer and senior political correspondent Jeff Greenfield. Schieffer will analyze the campaign and do reports for the network including "Face the Nation," where he is the weekly moderator. Greenfield will do overall analytic pieces and big-picture stories, said CBS News senior vp Paul Friedman. National political correspondent Gloria Borger is leaving the network to pursue other opportunities.

Other correspondents receiving roles in covering the candidates will be Sharyl Attkisson, Jim Axelrod, Cynthia Bowers, Kelly Cobiella, Nancy Cordes, Byron Pitts, Tracy Smith, Hari Sreenivasan and Bill Whitaker. CBS News also has selected a number of off-air reporters who will travel with the candidates and file for such CBS News platforms as TV, online and radio.

"The Web gives them a terrific outlet for all the information they come up with that can't be used on TV," Friedman said.

Plans for the coverage on TV are still being firmed up, and Friedman wasn't willing to discuss specifics, though he said that it was likely that the news division would get more airtime this cycle than 2004 because of the fact that it is a wide-open election without an incumbent. In addition, the timing is such that February will have a big night of primaries that will need to be reported on.

"We'll be talking with the network to get more airtime than we traditionally do," Friedman said.