David Gregory (journalist)

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David Gregory
David Gregory.jpg
David Gregory at NLCS Game 4 in October 2009.
BornDavid Michael Gregory
(1970-08-24) August 24, 1970 (age 43)
Los Angeles, California
EducationAmerican University, B.A., 1992
OccupationTelevision Host
Notable credit(s)Meet the Press (2008–)
NBC News Chief White House Correspondent (2001–2008)
Spouse(s)Beth Wilkinson (2000–present)
ChildrenMax, Ava and Jed (twins)
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David Gregory
David Gregory.jpg
David Gregory at NLCS Game 4 in October 2009.
BornDavid Michael Gregory
(1970-08-24) August 24, 1970 (age 43)
Los Angeles, California
EducationAmerican University, B.A., 1992
OccupationTelevision Host
Notable credit(s)Meet the Press (2008–)
NBC News Chief White House Correspondent (2001–2008)
Spouse(s)Beth Wilkinson (2000–present)
ChildrenMax, Ava and Jed (twins)

David Michael Gregory[1] (born August 24, 1970) is an American television host, and moderator of NBC News' Sunday morning talk show Meet the Press, and also a substitute anchor and host on various NBC News shows.[2]

Early life[edit]

Gregory was born in Los Angeles, California, the son of Carolyn Surtees, an account manager, and Don Gregory, a film and theatrical producer.[1] Gregory was born to a Jewish father and a non-Jewish mother; he was raised Jewish, and is a practicing Jew today.[3][4]

Gregory graduated from American University in 1992. While there, he worked for the campus television station, ATV, and received a degree in International Studies from the School of International Service. Gregory was named the School of International Service's alumnus of the year in 2005 and sits on the Dean's Advisory Council.[5][6]

Television host career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Gregory began his career at the age of 18 as a summer reporter for KGUN-TV in Tucson, Arizona.


Gregory has been the substitute co-anchor of Weekend Today, filling in for Lester Holt on that program since 2003. He has filled in for Matt Lauer on Today from 2005 to the present. Gregory was also the anchor of News Chat, Crosstalk NBC, and Newsfront on MSNBC from 1998 to 2000.

NBC Nightly News[edit]

Gregory has also filled in on NBC News Weekend Nightly News and NBC Nightly News since 2005.

Imus in the Morning[edit]

Gregory also filled the Imus in the Morning time slot on MSNBC after the Don Imus controversy involving the Rutgers University basketball team while MSNBC searched for a permanent host. He served as a guest host in the morning time slot for MSNBC (while also being simulcast on WFAN) for one week in May. The morning radio program was known as Gregory Live.

Race for the White House/1600 Pennsylvania Avenue[edit]

From March 17, 2008, through December 5, 2008, Gregory hosted a show on MSNBC weekday evenings, which replaced Tucker Carlson's Tucker.[7] The show was called Race for the White House until the conclusion of the 2008 U.S. Presidential election. From November 5, 2008, forward the show became known as 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.[8] Gregory was replaced by David Shuster, who was named as the new host for 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue starting with the December 15, 2008 show.

MSNBC anchor for election coverage in 2008[edit]

Due to internal fighting among the staff at MSNBC, Gregory was appointed as anchor on MSNBC during the presidential debates and the 2008 election.[9][10][11][12] On November 4–5, he teamed with Rachel Maddow, Eugene Robinson, Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann as commentators on the presidential election.

Meet the Press[edit]

Gregory became the moderator of Meet the Press, with his first episode being December 14, 2008.[2] This was the last episode hosted by interim moderator Tom Brokaw.

In the wake of South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford's admission that he travelled to Argentina to visit his lover during June 2009, The Post and Courier obtained cell phone records and emails in response to a request under the state Freedom of Information Act.[13] Among the emails were numerous invitations for Sanford to appear on various television shows, including emails from David Gregory.[13] Gregory told Sanford's press secretary "You know he will get a fair shake from me and coming on MTP puts all of this to rest" and "coming on Meet The Press allows you to frame the conversation how you really want to...and then move on."[14][15] Gregory later denied offering Sanford a "friendly forum", but rather a "fair forum", and stated: "I meant my forum allows him to have the time to discuss the situation in a fullsome [sic] way, to say what he wants and move on."[16][17]

During Gregory's tenure at Meet the Press, the show's ratings have fallen to their lowest in 21 years and it regularly places third among Sunday morning news shows. [18]

Relationship with the Bush White House[edit]

Gregory was assigned by NBC to the press corps covering George W. Bush when he ran for president in 2000. During the campaign, Bush threw a party for Gregory's 30th birthday, complete with cake, on the campaign plane.[19] Bush has nicknamed Gregory "Stretch" because of his height (6'5"),[20] and also "Dancing Man," for Gregory's occasional propensity to display his dance moves.[21]

After the election, Gregory became a White House correspondent for NBC. The conservative Media Research Center named him 'Best White House Correspondent' for his coverage of Bush's first 100 days.[22] Gregory held this position until taking the Meet the Press job in December 2008. Chuck Todd was named to replace him as White House correspondent on December 18, 2008.

It has been mentioned that Michael Chertoff, a Bush appointee, attended a baby shower for his children.[23]

He also participated with Karl Rove, Bush's chief advisor, in a skit for the Radio and Television Correspondents' Association Dinner in Washington DC.[24]


Press secretary conflicts[edit]

Gregory's interaction with Bush's press secretaries was contentious at times, garnering media attention in several instances. Numerous commentators have used these incidents to characterize Gregory's reportage as 'proof' of the news media's left-wing bias.[23][25] Gregory has told Howard Kurtz that "it's easy to divert attention against a familiar whipping boy" and that "I provide fodder for critics who say, 'Aha, they're out of control.'"[23]

On January 23, 2009, The Daily Beast columnist Ana Marie Cox stated that Barack Obama still has not discovered "this administration's David Gregory". She used Gregory as a metaphor for a White House foil, and she described this as a figure that could be interpreted as either "tough, news-oriented, and no-nonsense or showy, superficial, and self-indulgent".[26]

High-capacity magazine display[edit]

On the December 23, 2012 broadcast of Meet the Press with National Rifle Association chief executive Wayne LaPierre, Gregory displayed what he identified as "a magazine for ammunition that carries 30 bullets".[27][28] NBC had requested permission from the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) to include a high-capacity magazine in the segment and were denied.[29][30] Gregory displayed the magazine on the show, with media reports noting D.C. Code 7-2506.01(b) prohibits the possession of magazines with a capacity in excess of "10 rounds of ammunition."[31][32][33]

On December 26, 2012, MPD spokesmen confirmed the launch of an inquiry.[34] When asked by CNN on December 27, 2012, if he thought Gregory should be prosecuted, NRA president David Keene responded, "No, I don't think so... I really think what David Gregory did while he was inadvertently flouting the law was illustrating in a very graphic way, perhaps not intentionally, but in a graphic way just how silly some of these laws are."[35] Other gun rights advocates argued that not charging Gregory would show D.C. police to be hypocritical in enforcing gun laws.[36]

On January 8, 2013, a spokeswoman for D.C. Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier said her department has "completed the investigation into this matter, and the case has been presented to the District’s Office of the Attorney General for a determination of the prosecutorial merit of the case." On January 11, 2013, Attorney General of the District of Columbia Irvin Nathan declared Gregory's action was in violation of 7-2506.01(b),[37] but that he would not proceed with prosecution.[38]

Glenn Greenwald and Edward Snowden[edit]

On June 23, 2013, David Gregory posed a question to journalist Glenn Greenwald that the Washington Post described as a "gotcha inquiry"[39] containing "a veiled accusation of federal criminal wrongdoing, very much in the tradition of 'how long have you been beating your wife'".[40] According to the Los Angeles Times, "Gregory’s question disguised a loaded assumption"[41] that Greenwald aided and abbetted NSA leaker Edward Snowden before asking "why shouldn’t you, Mr. Greenwald, be charged with a crime?".[42] Greenwald responded vigorously in objection to the question. The accusation itself became a news story.[43][44] The New York Times said, "If you tease apart his inquiry, it suggests there might be something criminal in reporting out important information from a controversial source."[45] The Poynter Institute wrote, "The obvious defense is that he was merely asking a question that evinced a viewpoint advanced by U.S. Rep. Peter King and Washington Post columnist Marc Thiessen — that publishing secrets is law-breaking."[44] Opinion columnist Frank Rich called Gregory's charges "preposterous," questioning Gregory's own journalistic credentials and and asking why Gregory didn't also make similar accusations against Washington Post reporter Barton Gellman, who also published Snowden's leaks.[46]

Personal life[edit]

Since June 2000, Gregory has been married to former federal prosecutor and former Fannie Mae executive vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary, Beth Wilkinson.[1] They met while Gregory was covering the Oklahoma City bombing as a reporter and Wilkinson was serving as prosecutor on the case.[23] The couple have a son Max and twins — one daughter Ava and one son Jed. Although Gregory's wife is not Jewish, they are raising their children in the Jewish faith.[4]


  1. ^ a b c "Weddings: Beth Wilkinson, David Gregory". The New York Times. June 11, 2000. 
  2. ^ a b "NBC names David Gregory host of 'Meet the Press'". Associated Press. December 7, 2008. 
  3. ^ "Selling Judaism 101UJC explores ways to reach the unaffiliated". Washingtonjewishweek.com. 2008-03-19. Retrieved 2010-07-31. 
  4. ^ a b The Daily beast: "David Gregory Finds Religion" by Lauren Ashburn September 28, 2011
  5. ^ "About - ATV History". ATV American University. 
  6. ^ "David Gregory: NBC News Chief White House Correspondent and Host, MSNBC's 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue". MSNBC. 
  7. ^ Steinberg, Jacques (March 11, 2008). "At MSNBC, 'Tucker' Is Out, and David Gregory Is In". The New York Times. 
  8. ^ "With Race Nearly Over, Gregory's Show Gets New Name". Media Bistro. November 3, 2008. 
  9. ^ Bauder, David (September 8, 2008). "MSNBC: Olbermann, Matthews won't anchor political coverage". USA Today. 
  10. ^ Stelter, Brian (September 8, 2008). "MSNBC Takes Incendiary Hosts From Anchor Seat". New York Times. 
  11. ^ Shea, Danny (August 28, 2008). "MSNBC Infighting Boils Over". The Huffington Post. 
  12. ^ Kurtz, Howard (September 8, 2008). "MSNBC Drops Olbermann, Matthews as News Anchors". Washington Post. 
  13. ^ a b "The Post and Courier - Staff fielded requests from media giants - Charleston SC". postandcourier.com. 2009-07-14. Retrieved 2010-07-31. 
  14. ^ Roth, Zachary (2009-07-17). "NBC's Gregory to Sanford's Office: "Meet The Press Allows You To Frame The Conversation As You Really Want" | TPMMuckraker". Tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com. Retrieved 2010-07-31. 
  15. ^ http://media.charleston.net/2009/pdf/govstaffemails_0713009.pdf
  16. ^ Roth, Zachary (2009-07-21). "NBC's Gregory: "I Wasn't Promising A Friendly Forum" For Sanford | TPMMuckraker". Tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com. Retrieved 2010-07-31. 
  17. ^ Blue, Big (2009-07-18). "Exclusive: David Gregory Addresses Bias in Sanford Scandal". Daily Kos. Retrieved 2010-07-31. 
  18. ^ Mirkinson, Jack (August 30, 2013). "Good News For George". Huffington Post. 
  19. ^ "Gregory to host 'Meet the Press'". The Politico. 2008-12-02. 
  20. ^ Jose, Katharine (October 14, 2006). "NBC's David Gregory Accidentally Reveals His George Bush Impression". The Huffington Post. 
  21. ^ "Stretch vs. Dancing Man: The Many Faces of David Gregory". Politico.com. 2 December 2008. 
  22. ^ "Media Research Award". Media Research Center. Retrieved August 24, 2009. 
  23. ^ a b c d Kurtz, Howard (March 13, 2006). "Retorting From The White House David Gregory Is 6-5, but He Can Be A Little Short. Just Ask Scott McClellan.". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 24, 2009. 
  24. ^ Sklar, Rachel (March 29, 2007). "Correspondents Dinner: Rapping Rove, Burping Brian, and "What We Call The News"". The Huffington Post. 
  25. ^ O'Reilly, Bill (December 8, 2006). "Who Is Looking Out for You as Far as Iraq Is Concerned?". The O'Reilly Factor (FOXNews.com). Retrieved August 24, 2009. 
  26. ^ Cox, Ana Marie (January 23, 2009). "Game On! Obama's Clash With The White House Press Corps". The Daily Beast. Retrieved August 24, 2009. 
  27. ^ "NRA Chief speaks out". Meet the Press. December 23, 2012. Retrieved December 27, 2012. 
  28. ^ Lazo, Larry (December 25, 2012). "Washington D.C. police investigating whether NBC moderator violated law". CNN.com. Retrieved December 27, 2012. 
  29. ^ Soltis, Andy (December 27, 2012). "Gregory gun trouble". New York Post. Retrieved December 27, 2012. 
  30. ^ Byers, Dylan (December 26, 2012). "D.C. police: Illegal for David Gregory to show empty gun magazine on TV". Politico. Retrieved December 27, 2012. 
  31. ^ Glueck, Peter (January 11, 2013). "NBC’s Gregory won’t be charged for displaying ammunition clip on TV". Washington Post. Retrieved January 17, 2013. 
  32. ^ Glueck, Katie (December 26, 2012). "Cops told NBC not to use gun clip". Politico. Retrieved December 27, 2012. 
  33. ^ McCabe, Scott (December 26, 2012). "D.C. police say they denied NBC permission to use high-capacity magazine on show". Washington Examiner. Retrieved December 27, 2012. 
  34. ^ Schmidt, Michael S. (December 26, 2012). "NBC's Display of a 30-Shot Gun Magazine Prompts a Police Inquiry". The New York Times. Retrieved December 27, 2012. 
  35. ^ Fung, Katherine (December 27, 2012). "David Gregory Should Not Be Prosecuted: NRA President David Keene". Huffington Post. 
  36. ^ Williams, Clarence; Hermann, Peter (January 8, 2012). "D.C. attorney general’s office to investigate display of ammunition magazine on TV". The Washington Post. 
  37. ^ Nathan, Irvin (January 11, 2013). "David Gregory letter". Washington Post. Retrieved January 18, 2013. 
  38. ^ Wemple, Erik (January 11, 2013). "David Gregory’s stunt worked!". Washington Post. Retrieved January 11, 2013. 
  39. ^ Wemple, Erik (June 24, 2013). "David Gregory vs. Jake Tapper vis-a-vis Glenn Greenwald". The Washington Post. Retrieved June 29, 2013. 
  40. ^ Wemple, Erik (June 23, 2013). "David Gregory whiffs on Greenwald question". The Washington Post. Retrieved June 29, 2013. 
  41. ^ Mueller, Benjamin (June 25, 2013). "What's bugging David Gregory about Glenn Greenwald?". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved June 29, 2013. 
  42. ^ David Gregory spars with Glenn Greenwald, By ASSOCIATED PRESS | 6/23/13 1:23 PM EDT Updated: 6/24/13 1:40 PM EDT, retrieved from politico.com on 6/24/2013
  43. ^ http://www.businessinsider.com/david-gregory-glenn-greenwald-edward-snowden-crime-2013-6
  44. ^ a b Journalists react to controversial questions David Gregory asked Glenn Greenwald, by Andrew Beaujon Published June 24, 2013, Poynter Institute MediaWire, poynter.org, retrieved 2013 6 24
  45. ^ Carr, David (June 24, 2013). "The Other Snowden Drama: Impugning the Messenger". The New York Times. Retrieved June 29, 2013. 
  46. ^ Rich, Frank (26 June 2013). "Frank Rich on the National Circus: Gay Marriage Triumphs, Roberts Be Damned". New York Magazine. Retrieved 1 July 2013. 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
Tom Brokaw
Meet the Press Moderator
December 14, 2008 – present
Succeeded by