Power Grid Update: ABC’s Jake Tapper And People‘s Larry Hackett Soar


Picture 1When you’re a television reporter, you make news any way you can — then, you see how it affects your Power Grid ranking. ABC White House Correspondent Jake Tapper has a friendly rivalry with his NBC contemporary Chuck Todd, and in the heat of the baseball playoffs facial hair is on the line. That’s right — two of the most important TV journalists have made a bet: “Jake wagered Chuck that if the Philadelphia Phillies win the National League Championship, Todd must shave his goatee, and if the L.A. Dodgers win, Tapper must grow one.”

Maybe that’s why Tapper jumped from #5 to #2 among TV Reporters? Todd sits right behind him at #3, while Andrea Mitchell occupies the top spot. In harder news, Tapper also took a turn Sunday on This Week with White House Senior Adviser David Axelrod, contributing to his #3 rank in TV airtime and huge number of Twitter followers.

Meanwhile, People magazine managing editor Larry Hackett went from #17 to #3 among Magazine Editors thanks to a huge number of online visits and some newsstand buzz as they became the first publication to run current photos of Jaycee Dugard after she was held captive for 18 years. Hackett appeared on Today with Matt Lauer and called Dugard’s cover “radiant.” It’s just another case of a huge exclusive gamble paying off in recognition and subsequent influence.

Elsewhere on the Grid, blogger Andrew Sullivan made a huge leap from #29 to #7 in his secondary category — as a TV Pundit — with increased appearances based on President Obama’s speech on gay rights to the HRC. Sullivan, as we reported, was none too pleased with the president’s level of action. Behind him, Peggy Noonan made progress, moving from #62 to #14 among pundits, with a lot of blog buzz based on her spot as a Harvard guest lecturer and many television appearances to speak out against Obama.

The Media Moguls section also had a noticeable shake-up this week, as Viacom majority owner Sumner Redstone moved from #8 to #4, making news for selling off his non-voter company shares, attempting to raise almost $1 billion to pay off outstanding debts. Such a move is an example of the age old “any press is good press” model, because despite Redstone’s financial struggles, any mogul does well to stay in the news.

Check out the rest of the rankings here.

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