Katie Couric And Sarah Palin Compete For Morning Audience

It seems that Sarah Palin’s former nemesis Katie Couric, a beloved former Today anchor, will be in her second day of a week-long stint at Good Morning America.

It’s ironic that Katie Couric is hosting GMA as Sarah Palin hosts the NBC TODAY show. This is the type of competition that producers want, as viewers switch between channels to decide which morning show to watch. It’s is an interesting week, indeed.

For her part, Couric kicked off her week-long hosting gig this morning by moderating a heated debate between Dan Abrams and Nancy Grace on the news story of a missing mom whose husband killed the couple’s children before killing himself. “I’ve got a whistle and I’m not afraid to use it,” she joked.

But Palin isn’t the only big gun NBC is pulling out tomorrow morning. In recent weeks the ratings gap between GMA and Today has been closing — at last report it was a difference of less than 150,000 viewers. Today is suddenly being portrayed as in ratings trouble, and host Ann Curry seems to be taking most of the blame. In hopes of luring whatever viewers they could from ABC — and taking the morning show ratings battle to fighting-dirty territory-Today “legend” Meredith Vieira returned to the couch this morning to make a special announcement.

If this morning marked the first shot fired between the networks, Tuesday’s Palin-Couric showdown is the main event. Today producers and cast-members teased the day’s line-up and even aired a phone conversation between Matt Lauer and former Alaska governor Sarah Palin in which he goaded her by asking what newspapers she planned to read in advance of her co-hosting appearance. The not-so-subtle nod to Palin’s 2008 interview with Couric didn’t go unnoticed by Palin.

Palin is scheduled to be interviewed during the 7 a.m. hour of Today on Tuesday and co-hosting with Matt Lauer during the 8 a.m. hour. The show is hoping to capture viewers who might otherwise tune into Couric on ABC with the promise of “a side you haven’t seen” of Palin, as tweeted by show’s producer Megan Kopf.

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