From the NY Times:
MSNBC tried a bold experiment this year by putting two politically incendiary hosts, Keith Olbermann and Chris Matthews, in the anchor chair to lead the cable news channel’s coverage of the election debates.That experiment appears to be over.
After months of accusations of political bias and simmering animosity between MSNBC and its parent network NBC, the channel decided over the weekend that the NBC News correspondent and MSNBC host David Gregory would anchor news coverage of the coming debates and election night. Mr. Olbermann and Mr. Matthews will remain as analysts during the coverage.
The change — which comes in the home stretch of the long election cycle — is a direct result of tensions associated with the channel’s perceived shift to the political left.
From WaPo: Same story of Olbermann and Matthews being removed but with an important factual insertion into the story line.
They said Olbermann’s influence at MSNBC would in no way be diminished and that the shift would enable him and Matthews to offer more candid analysis during live coverage. Olbermann confirmed yesterday he had initiated the discussions.
“Phil and I have debated this set-up since late winter/early spring (with me saying, ‘Are you sure this flies?’ and him saying, ‘Yes, but let’s judge it event by event’) and I think we both reached the same point during the RNC,” Olbermann said by e-mail.
Both good articles you should read to get the whole story. Here’s the DKos take. My take: the ‘news anchor’ introduces the various performances but gives the analysis to the analysts such as Olbermann, Matthews, Brokaw and Williams. Olbermann mixed to the two positions. I can see the conflict. The analysts should question Gregory for his insights as he is an expert on this election. This change, however, keeps him from makes comments prior to being asked to switch hats. They are two different hats.
I think it will make for slightly more boring coverage, athough David Gregory is a good journalist, yet better give and take on the analysis. By the way the reference in both stories to the ‘9/11 tape’ Olbermann made a very clear caveat that he was speaking only for himself as he had lost people in that disaster.
There’s more discussion on Memeorandum.