When she spoke to The Huffington Post in January about her then soon-to-start CNN morning show, Soledad O'Brien said she wanted to make "conversation" a key part of her program.
"I think I do conversation well," she said. "I think I can do context well...and I think that, if I can bring that to a morning show, we can be very successful."
11 months later, O'Brien's conversations with guests on "Starting Point" are getting her a lot of attention. From advising Rudy Giuliani to "stop putting words in my mouth" to telling John Sununu, "You can't just repeat it and make it true," she has gained a reputation for the withering comeback and the biting putdown. (It's also led to much Republican grumbling; Sununu has dubbed her a spokesperson for the Obama campaign, a charge O'Brien brushes off.)
O'Brien talked to Newsweek's Lloyd Grove on Monday about her newfound notoriety. Speaking about her clash with Giuliani, she compared the former New York mayor to one of her children.
"I really wasn't pissed--we just had to lay out some ground rules," she said. "You know what it reminded me of? It's like when you speak to your kid, and you're like, let me tell you something: we can disagree, or we can agree, but this is how it goes."
O'Brien is also not showing signs of slowing down; on Wednesday, her guests got into such an argument that she threatened to climb onto the table and quiet them.