TAMPA, Fla. — Hurricane Isaac made land about 90 miles southeast of New Orleans on Tuesday before 7 p.m. local time, but CNN was the only one of three cable outlets to break away from the Republican National Convention here to present a substantial report on the emergency.
MSNBC and Fox News both stuck with their coverage of the political convention, a couple of hours before the night’s headline speakers, Ann Romney and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. A news ticker ran across the bottom of the screen at Fox with Isaac updates, but MSNBC (slogan “The place for politics”) went with a straight dose of politics.
CNN, third in the prime-time ratings, switched from the convention to Anderson Cooper in New Orleans as the storm struck the outer reaches of Louisiana. Cooper’s rain-soaked report stressed that the worst of the storm was still several hours from the city deluged by Hurricane Katrina almost seven years to the day earlier.
The CNN report alternated between Cooper and in-studio weather reporter Chad Myers and Ed Lavandera, the network’s Dallas-based correspondent, who had been positioned on the barrier island of Grand Isle, a repeated hot spot for past hurricanes.