Andrea Mitchell would be fine as a caretaker for the role, I suppose. But David Gregory seems like a terrible choice for among other reasons, he’s not very likable on TV (Russert’s likeability was a huge asset). Keith Olbermann would be a complete disaster, but I assume everyone not sniffing glue knows that. Chris Matthews would require changing the show to “Meet Chris Matthews’ Ego.” Katie Couric? Come now.
The best choice on the list of possibilities is Chuck Todd. I know Chuck a little, but friendship isn’t my motivation. I think he’s the only person on the inside track who’d actually consider the show to be more important than his TV career. Russert famously considered himself a “custodian” of MTP. I’d bet that Chuck would hold the same devotion, if not even more intensely. And with the exception of Matthews, Chuck knows more about politics than all of the other contenders combined.
So why not have the best of both worlds? Russert was many things, but he wasn’t a “moderator.” Moderators balance and direct debates. Russert, to his credit, was a prosecutor. Why not make Chuck Todd the actual moderator of the show and have him moderate a panel of journalists?
That was Jonah Goldberg.
Maybe my perception is skewed, but Chuck Todd really seems to have, in a very short time, created a rather solid reputation for himself. And of course by saying nice things about Todd, this now means that every Todd-hater in the country (both of them) will immediately come tell me in the comments why I am wrong and Todd is actually only one step removed from Cthulhu.