Monday night was a bit of "surprise TV." Since we were on the eve of the polls closing we wanted to continue our almost mathematical equality of time between the two presidential candidates.
We were supposed to start the show with FNC's Phil Keating (search) in Dallas with President Bush's event. As luck would have it, just as the show was starting (and while Sean Hannity was tossing to me), my producer said to me, "Don't go to Phil, go to Molly." Molly Henneberg (search) was covering the Kerry/Edwards campaign and supposed to be our second reporter hit. I went directly to Molly and, again as luck would have it, she could not hear the toss with all the noise in the background. For what seemed like eternity she just looked into the camera. While I was not on camera, I likewise just looked into the camera... hoping her audio would get better (and it did.) Of course the problem seemed like eternity to me. Seconds in television feel like hours to an anchor.
When we went to break I asked if we could fix the problem with Phil. I am very much aware of the importance of the election and I did not want to present only one candidate. If the problem had been in reverse -- I would have been worried not to have the reporter hit for Senator Kerry's campaign. At one point during the show I was told, "OK, go to Phil"… and just as I was about to...."No, don't go to Phil!"... and just as I was backing off in my mind, "No, go to Phil." I did go to Phil at that point and all was fine.
As for the e-mails below, they are not picked randomly today. I wanted to pick some that were not partisan:
E-mail No. 1
I loved the pics! It all seems so confusing to me, don't know how you guys ever pull it together so well. It must be very exciting and tiring but a good kind of tiring! I have never known so many of my own family to be so distraught and really agonizing over their votes. Sure hope we really have results by next day, I really don't think they could go thru another 2000. And yes we do have a fascinating senate race here! Anyway have fun, and I'll be watching of course.
E-mail No. 2
Just wanted to write in to say what an awesome show is put on by Greta (and her team)! She is so well-spoken, strong, and decisive; I just love to watch the show!
Also, wanted to say that her new hair color looks amazing! Much, much better than before, not something that really matters in the news world, I know, just thought I’d comment.
Thank you for putting on a great show with ALL the facts! Our TV rarely leaves the FOX News Channel.
ANSWER: Elizabeth -- our team gets all the credit for the show (I will take 2 percent.) As for the hair color, the woman who cuts my hair gets all that credit, too. I just close my eyes and hope she covers all the grey and does not make my hair pink. I am too old for pink.
E-mail No. 3
My husband and I are FOX News Channel fans, and as always, we wanted to watch the news, and all the Direct TV channels are working except for FOX (360), is something wrong with you guys? What's going on?
ANSWER: Maybe your TV has the same problem as mine. My husband and I can't get another cable network on one of our TVs. We have had the cable people out to fix it twice and still it does not work. I don't usually watch that other cable news network but from time to time I like to see what the competition is doing.
E-mail No. 4
Where is your segment on the Bush campaign? Nice long one on Kerry campaign but not very "fair and balanced"!
ANSWER: I hope this e-mailer watched the entire show. The writer will realize the technical problem at the top of our show... and the fact that we later "fixed" it and had the segment (reporter hit on Bush.)
Do you have something you'd like to say to Greta? Please write to her at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Watch "On the Record with Greta Van Susteren" weeknights at 10 p.m. ET