The Mirror

The Mirror Questionnaire With Al Jazeera’s David Shuster

Betsy Rothstein Gossip blogger
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Today we catch up with Al Jazeera America’s Emmy Award-winning anchor David Shuster. Shuster used to work for MSNBC but he and the network parted ways after he tried out for a new show for CNN and referred to Chelsea Clinton being pimped out on the campaign trail. When he made the Chelsea remark, it was 2008 and he had been guest hosting Tucker, as in The Daily Caller’s Editor-in-Chief’s show at the time.  Shuster’s resumé also includes Fox News, CNN and Current TV. To be sure, Shuster occasionally enjoys jumping into the fray, but he’s settling into family life these days with a relatively new wife, Kera Rennert, a TV writer and producer, and their daughter, Ayala Danielle. He explains the picture below, saying, “Along the lines of our baby girl not being able to verbally protest my lousy singing voice, she also can’t escape my odd Halloween efforts whether they ‘bug’ her or not. Great parenting, eh?  I’m sure I’ll pay in years to come.”

Bona Fides

Hometown:  Grew up in Bloomington, Indiana.

Age:  46

Named for:   Great Uncle Marty, who I’m told had a great sense of humor.

First job ever:  Marketing.  I cooked hot dogs for grocery store shoppers to sample.

Current employment:   Anchor/presenter for Al Jazeera America


If someone wants to get on your good side, what candy or liquor should they ply you with? I don’t drink.  But, I’ll do almost anything for gummy bears.

Most exotic place you’ve ever visited: Great Barrier Reef, Australia.

Who is your celebrity crush? Former basketball coach Bob Knight.

A thought that makes you want to cry: Another 20 years of Coach Knight saying no to my interview requests.

Weirdest habit you’ve observed in a newsroom setting? Years ago, a producer I knew would get so angry over mistakes, he would punch holes in the wall and destroy chairs.  He was promoted.  Repeatedly.

If you had to have a U.S. senator or congressman as your father who would it be? I love my Dad.  But to your question, the latest disclosure reports show Congressman Darryl Issa is now worth nearly 300 million dollars.   I’m just saying.

Since this is The Mirror Questionnaire, what would you change about yourself physically if you could? I enjoy singing to our baby girl.  As soon as Ayala is old enough to talk, I’m certain her first words will be, “Daddy, your voice sucks.”

And your personality?  Don’t get me started.

Preferred beach: Wherever my gorgeous wife Kera is hanging out.

Guilty pleasure TV show: Boardwalk Empire

On a scale of 1 to 10, how self-obsessed are you?  (10 being you can’t tear yourself away from your own daily Google search and 1 meaning you often spend time in the country away from your computer and don’t give a crap about your Klout score.)   2.  I really don’t care.

Workout regimen: Walk a few miles each day, swim every week, and play as much tennis as possible…

Pick one – flabby thighs, cankles or love handles? Love handles.

A thought that brings you great joy: Being with my wife and our baby girl.

A regret (of any kind): My wife and I first met in the 1980’s at summer camp.  I regret not reconnecting with her sooner than two years ago.

Any brushes with death? If so, please describe. No, thankfully.

Just a preference Q: Bo or Sunny? Sunny.

Most annoying thing your editor does: My editors are never annoying… ever.  And neither am I.

Go for a stroll in the park with one of the following and explain the reason for your choice. 1. Andrew Sullivan, of The Daily Dish. 2. The Washington Post’s Jonathan Capehart. 3.  NewCo’s Glenn Greenwald. Nothing against Jonathan and Glenn… and I like them both.  But I’ve never met Andrew and would enjoy chatting with him about some of his amazing work.

And now, a question from our most recent interviewee, Toby Harnden: If you could tell one person to their face that they’re full of shit, with no consequences, who would it be?  Shuster: It would be the anonymous nut who keeps sending me vile hate mail.

Please provide a question for the next lucky victim of The Mirror Questionnaire. Make it good. If you had to watch or read a news report in a language you didn’t understand, what language would it be and why?