Chuck Todd announced on Sunday that he is leaving Meet The Press, but his trained choice Kristen Welker is taking over the show.
Todd said at the close of Meet The Press:
I have a personal announcement. While today is not my final show, this is going to be my final summer here at Meet the Press. It’s been an amazing nearly decade-long run. I’m pretty — really proud of what this team and I have built over the last decade and frankly the last 15-plus years that I’ve been here at NBC, which also includes my time as political director.
I’d rather leave a little bit too soon than stay a tad bit too long. I’ve had two amazing professional chapters, and I already have plans for my next chapter, including some projects right here at NBC News that I’ve been very focused on. Among them, docuseries and some docudramas focused on trying to educate the public better, bridge our divides and pierce our political bubbles. So while I may be leaving this chair, I’m still going to help NBC navigate and coach colleagues.
I’m also ready to take a step back because I have so much confidence in the person who I’m going to pass the baton to. She’s somebody who’s been ready for this for a long time. Kristen Welker. I’ve had the privilege of working with her from essentially her first day here in Washington. And let me just say, she’s the right person in the right moment. And for what it’s worth, this is always how I hoped this would end for me, that I’d be passing the baton to her. I’ll officially do that in September.
Chuck Todd’s Departure Has Been Rumored For At Least A Year
NBC and Chuck Todd can frame this move as a family decision, and give the host a classy exit, but as I wrote in 2022, there was pressure inside the network to get rid of Todd.
The show had seen viewership decline in the 20%-25% range, and the bosses at the network were not happy. Face The Nation on CBS has become the most-watched Sunday show, so the writing has been on the wall for a while that if the ratings didn’t improve, Todd would be toast.
Chuck Todd’s Legacy At Meet The Press
Chuck Todd’s legacy at Meet The Press is mixed. He was trained by Tim Russert, and he did leave the show in better shape than he found it after the David Gregory years, and Todd was honest about the Sunday shows being access journalism that couldn’t go too hard on Republicans who they would refuse to appear on MTP.
The larger question remains. Are Meet The Press and all of the Sunday shows still relevant? The Sunday shows no longer book top newsmakers. Most of the guests rarely break news and declining viewership of these programs suggests that their era is over.
Chuck Todd is a fountain of DC conventional wisdom. He does cater to Republicans too much, and Kristen Welker probably won’t be any better. Every though the country and younger generations of voters are moving left and more progressive, shows like Meet The Press are still stuck in the mentality that America is a conservative country.
The Chuck Todd era has finally come to an end at Meet The Press, but the future looks just as murky for the Sunday shows as when he started.
Jason is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association