What are the odds of having hosts from rival morning programs in Jerusalem on the same day? That was my first thought while watching the Today show's Matt Lauer and Good Morning America's Diane Sawyer both broadcast live this morning from Jerusalem for stories that didn't involve a massive bombing or the war on terror.
Why were both in town? Today was there to kick off its "Mysteries of Faith" series that it’s been promoting for the past couple of weeks. And the holy city was GMA's second stop in its "The 7 New Wonders" series, which began earlier this week.
Today says it was purely a coincidence, as the show has been working on the series for months following its Da Vinci Code blowout last spring. But a GMA insider is unconvinced, saying that Today didn't apply for permits to broadcast from Jerusalem until late last week, while GMA lined up its permits months ago. The GMA staffer says maybe someone in Jerusalem tipped off GMA's plans to Today, and that NBC quickly mobilized its crews.
By Ken Kerschbaumer