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New anchor Couric lands Bush interview

She will discuss homeland security with the President for a CBS special
/ Source: Reuters

In a high-profile interview coinciding with her debut as CBS Evening News anchor next week, Katie Couric will sit down with President Bush to discuss homeland security for an upcoming special, the network said Monday

The CBS News special on the aftermath of Sept. 11, titled “Five Years Later: How Safe Are We?” will air next Wednesday with reports examining the continuing threat of future attacks, the nation’s state of readiness and how Americans are coping with post-9/11 fears and anxiety.

Excerpts from Couric’s interview with Bush for the special also will be aired next Tuesday during her first broadcast as anchor of the CBS Evening News, the network said.

Couric left NBC’s top-rated morning program “Today” after 15 years as co-host to join CBS as the permanent replacement for Dan Rather, who stepped down as anchor last March under criticism for his role in a botched report about Bush’s military service.

Couric is the first woman named as the solo anchor of a major U.S. network evening newscast, and CBS has mounted an unprecedented publicity campaign to promote her arrival.

A CBS News spokeswoman also said on Monday that Walter Cronkite, who served as anchor from 1963 to 1981, had recently taped a voice-over for the opening introduction of the newscast — “This is the CBS Evening News...” but the network had not decided whether to use it.

She said there were no plans for Cronkite to appear in studio with Couric.

Couric has said she has spoken with Cronkite about her upcoming role as the new face of the Evening News, and she would seem to gain an added measure of credibility by having the legendary journalist once known as “the most trusted man in America” introduce her newscast.