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The Comey hearing could join 'those rare historic moments when the whole country stops to watch'

Former FBI Director James Comey's public testimony before the Senate on Thursday could "join those rare historic moments when the whole country stops to watch," NBC's Chuck Todd predicted on Meet the Press. Judging by broadcast networks' planned coverage, it will at least be hard to miss: "Not only are all the major networks going to carry James Comey's testimony live at 10 a.m. ET on Thursday ... they're announcing the coverage plans several days ahead of time," writes Reliable Sources.

Both ABC and CBS will break from their regular daytime programming to cover Comey's testimony live, with George Stephanopoulos anchoring the former and Norah O'Donnell, Gayle King, and Charlie Rose the latter. Shep Smith will helm the Fox News program, with Tucker Carlson and Bret Baier running "special live editions" of their shows.

Lester Holt, Savannah Guthrie, and Chuck Todd will cover the hearing on NBC News. On CNN, a countdown clock is already ticking down to when Wolf Blitzer and Anderson Cooper will anchor the testimony (cord-cutters take note: CNN will allow viewers to stream the testimony online without a cable provider log-in).

MSNBC has not announced an anchor yet, but will soon, The Hill reports. And for those who want to stretch their legs, at least one bar in Washington, D.C., plans to make an event out of the hearing.

"[There are] lots and lots of other questions that Comey can answer in Thursday's hearing," CNN writes. "And his answers are the sort of stuff that could have explosive consequences for this president and this White House — particularly given how adamant Trump has been that all of the reporting on his conversations with Comey is totally wrong."

"Think Army-McCarthy hearings in 1954," Todd said. "Watergate hearings in 1973. Oliver North's testimony in the Iran Contra hearings in 1987, and of course Anita Hill at the Clarence Thomas hearings in 1991."