OBAMA’S BIG TRIP….In comments, loki demands to know what I think of Barack Obama’s upcoming trip to Europe and the Middle East. Instead of offering a longwinded analysis of my own, let me turn over the floor to Howard Kurtz of the Washington Post:

The three network anchors will travel to Europe and the Middle East next week for Barack Obama’s trip, adding their high-wattage spotlight to what is already shaping up as a major media extravaganza.

Lured by an offer of interviews with the Democratic presidential candidate, Brian Williams, Charlie Gibson and Katie Couric will make the overseas trek, meaning that the NBC, ABC and CBS evening newscasts will originate from stops along the route and undoubtedly give it big play….The plan is for Williams, Gibson and Couric interviews to be parceled out on successive nights in different countries, giving each anchor a one-day exclusive.

….The senator from Illinois has been drawing far more media attention than his Republican rival from Arizona….When McCain visited Britain, France and Israel in March and met with their leaders, no network anchors tagged along. NBC and ABC sent correspondents; CBS did not. None of the evening newscasts covered his trip to Canada last month. And McCain’s swing through Colombia and Mexico two weeks ago was barely covered, although NBC and ABC sent correspondents.

Do I still need to answer the question? I mean, what’s not to like?

(But am I afraid that Obama will overdo it and turn the whole thing into an unseemly spectacle? Nah. He’s a pretty sharp guy. The only thing he’s going to turn this into is a gold mine of free publicity.)

(However, I will offer this free prediction: Either National Review or the Weekly Standard — or both! — will headline their recap of the trip, “The Innocent Abroad.” You heard it here first.)

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