Late night booking wars: Fight for the 2016 candidates

Willie Grace | 9/8/2015, 9:59 a.m.
In 2009, President Obama became the first sitting president to appear on a late-night talk show. Since then he's been ...
President Barack Obama reacts to a photograph during an interview with David Letterman during a taping of the "Late Show with David Letterman" at the Ed Sullivan Theater in New York, New York, September 18, 2012.

Hillary Clinton is taping interviews with both ABC News anchor David Muir and celebrity talk show host Ellen DeGeneres on Tuesday.

And Senator Elizabeth Warren, whose recent meeting with Biden stirred speculation about a joint Democratic ticket, is on "The View" on Tuesday morning.

On the talk show circuit, goal #1 is to "get a laugh," said Bill Carter, "and show some part of our personality that people maybe haven't before."

Carter, a CNN contributor and the author of two definitive books about late-night, said the Bush appearance on Colbert is particularly important. Colbert played a blowhard conservative pundit on Comedy Central for almost a decade, but he's retiring that character now.

By interviewing a prominent Republican on premiere night, "I think that's kind of a signal he's sending," that Colbert is no longer in character, Carter said on CNN's "New Day."

And for Bush, he said, it's a chance to "show some energy -- to counter the image that Trump is trying to throw at him."

Meanwhile, Clinton's appearance on Fallon next week could be seen as Democratic counter-programming -- because it's on the same night as the Republican presidential primary debate on CNN.

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