Kristen Welker will face a big first test as moderator of “Meet the Press” on her debut episode this Sunday.
Welker is set to begin her time in the anchor chair with a sit-down interview with former President Donald Trump, CNN first reported and was later confirmed by NBC News.
The interview, people familiar with the matter told CNN, is scheduled to be taped Thursday at Trump’s Bedminster club in New Jersey. While Trump participated in a town hall with CNN earlier this year, the “Meet the Press” sit-down will mark his first interview with a broadcast news network since he departed the White House and now faces a total of 91 charges in four criminal cases, in four different jurisdictions — two federal and two state cases.
NBC News said it had also extended an invitation to President Joe Biden. A spokesperson for Trump did not respond to requests for comment.
The appearance by Trump on the acclaimed Sunday public affairs program will mark his first since 2019, when the show was hosted by Chuck Todd, who signed off as “Meet the Press” moderator over the weekend.
NBC News stressed that the interview will be pre-taped, allowing the news outlet to fact-check Trump’s claims and put them in context. The network also said that it will post a fact-check on its website following the interview.
While NBC News will have additional tools at its disposal to fact check Trump, it will still be a challenging task for Welker. Trump often lies at a rapid clip, and confronting him in real-time has proven to be difficult for even some of the most seasoned broadcast journalists.