Sky News is mounting what it says will be one of its biggest ever overseas operations to cover the US election tomorrow night..
Sky’s US Correspondent Michelle Clifford has been following the final days of the Obama campaign and will end up in the Illinois Senator’s camp on election night. Robert Nisbet has been following McCain and his vice president candidate Sarah Palin and will end in Arizona for McCain’s election night event.
The election night will be anchored by Jeremy Thompson in New York, and coverage will come live all night from Obama headquarters in Illinois and McCain headquarters in Arizona, with Sky’s Andrew Wilson hosting an election night barbecue in the “Sky News White House” in Miami.
Anna Botting will be tracking voters through a polling station in San Francisco and in Washington Adam Boulton will be offering analysis whilst in Sky’s results centre, Martin Stanford will keep viewers up-to-date with each poll and developing story.
The broadcaster’s online offering at Skynews.com has a dedicated election page with an interactive map allowing users to follow the results as they come in on election night. .
Five News’ chief correspondent, Jonathan Samuels, has been reporting from different locations across the United States during the last week. Matt Barbet will host the lunchtime and both evening news programmes live from Washington on Tuesday 4 and Wednesday 5 November.
Political editor, Andy Bell, will be offering the latest polls and predictions, and at the end of his journey travelling around America Samuels will also be live with the latest from the final stages of the campaigns. In addition all correspondents sent out the US have been blogging on Five’s website.
David Dimbleby will be anchoring coverage for the BBC, and will be hosting a six hour live broadcast from 23.20 on 7 November to air across BBC 1, BBC News 24 and BBC World and also streaming on BBC Online.
Three presenters have been sent out to Washington – breakfast anchor Jeremy Bowen will present his programme from across the pond, Six O’Clock News presenter Huw Edwards will provide regular bulletins during the day and Jeremy Paxman will front a Washington-based Newsnight.
ITN, which provides news for Channel 4 and ITV, has also sent out a number of big name presenters.
Sir Trevor McDonald, who in the run up to election night has been spending time in small towns in America, will be hosting News at Ten for ITV from Washington DC, and Mark Austin will present the ITV Evening News from the USA. ITV will also have a live results show starting at midnight on Tuesday night, which will be presented by Alastair Stewart in the studio in London and Julie Etchingam in New York.
Washington correspondent John Irvine, international editor Bill Neely and senior correspondent James Mates have been playing a key role in coverage so far and will continue to do so this week.
Channel 4 News will be using Jon Snow, Sarah Smith and Jonathan Rugman all out in the US, with an extended noon programme on Wednesday for a full hour when Krishnan Guru-Murthy will present from Washington, Smith and Rugman from the US and Lindsey Hilsum and Gary Gibbon from London.
CNN International will be joining up with CNN US to broadcast eight hours of simultanious live coverage, with European broadcasts fronted by former BBC political editor Robin Oakley.
CNN International will also take advantage of its international positioning, and will have a team in place in more than 32 countries including Obama’s ancestral home town in Kenya, Iraq, Israel, a number of cities in Europe, Asia and Latin America, and across the US.
The twists and turns of the US election campaign has created an enormous appetite for the story in the UK, according to Guardian’s foreign editor.
Harriet Sherwood has been running the Guardian’s election coverage from the US for three weeks, where they have a team of around 23 working on the story.
“If you look at our website you’ll see every day the stories that are being read most widely are American stories, everybody is fascinated by this campaign.”
Compared with the last US election the Guardian has ramped up its video content from the occasional video to around five a day.
The paper already had around 15 staff (editorial and production) based in the US working on Guardian America and has correspondents for The Guardian and The Observer.
Another seven staff – Sherwood, a Comment is Free editor, three multimedia journalists and two commentators – have been shipped out to join them for the duration of the election. Two buses that have been travelling across America producing daily videos wherever they have stopped, covering a variety of subject matter, and blogging their journey as well.
Gary Young, a staff writer based in the US has been based in a small US town called Roanoke in Virginia. “The idea of that was that with most newspapers and websites, the way they cover election campaigns is that to run from place to place,” explained Sherwood. “We wanted to spend some time in one place to find out how the campaign was affecting one town – what the issues were, whether people were changing their minds. So he stayed there for 3 weeks and wrote and did videos.”
As for tommorrow night, when the results start coming in, Sherwood said: “We’ll be doing non-stop coverage for at least 36 hours because we have to do material for the paper, then once that’s finished we’ll carry on doing more stuff for the website, and then we’ll do the next day’s paper as well. Now that everybody does digital as well as print, and because of the time difference it means there’s never a point in the night where you can say we’re done. But people are very excited and energised by the campaign, its been a great story and the adrenaline will be carrying us through.”