No announcement yet.

Veteran CBS News Anchor Dan Rather Resigns

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Veteran CBS News Anchor Dan Rather Resigns

    Veteran newsman Dan Rather, known for aggressive reports peppered with folksy phrases from his Texas youth, said on Tuesday he will step down as the CBS network's top news anchor after almost a quarter of a century.

    Rather, who was embroiled in a journalism scandal in September over his reporting about President Bush (news - web sites)'s service in the National Guard during the Vietnam War, is leaving his role early next year.

    CBS, a unit of Viacom, said Rather, 73, will remain as a correspondent for its "60 Minutes" news magazine and other assignments.

    "I have decided to leave the CBS Evening News on March 9, 2005," Rather said in a statement. "I have been lucky and blessed over these years to have what is, to me, the best job in the world and to have it at CBS News."

    Rather said he began talks in the summer with his bosses about when to step down and decided to wait until after the recent election, which saw Bush elected for a second term.

    Rather was anchor for CBS's main evening news show since 1981 -- succeeding Walter Cronkite, dubbed "the most trusted man in America" -- and won the hearts of many with his colorful language and quirky turns of phrase.

    When CBS called the state of Florida for Bush on election night, Rather said Democratic challenger John Kerry (news - web sites) was "rapidly reaching the point where his back is to the wall and the bill collector is at the door."

    Earlier, he had said, "This Florida race is hotter than a Times Square Rolex."


    But from Ronald Reagan (news - web sites)'s presidency to the most recent campaign, Rather was dogged by critics who accused him of political bias. Conservative media critic Reed Irvine started a "Can Dan" campaign 16 years ago and is among Web sites dedicated to trying to tarnish his reputation.

    In an enormous blow to its credibility, CBS News in September said it had been deliberately misled over the authenticity of documents it aired in a story challenging Bush's military service. Rather said CBS was duped on how its source for the documents had obtained the papers.

    "I want to say personally and directly I'm sorry," an apologetic Rather said during a news broadcast. "This was an error made in good faith."

    Rather was in Dallas on Nov. 22, 1963, when President John F. Kennedy was assassinated and relentlessly pursued the story, which gave him his first prolonged national exposure. A decade later he covered the White House for CBS during Watergate.

    In a famous exchange with Richard Nixon, the embattled president asked Rather during a televised news briefing, "Are you running for something?" Rather shot back with, "No, Mr. President, are you?" Later, Rather began a question with, "I want to state this question with due respect for your office." Nixon retorted, "That would be unusual."

    Rather, who co-wrote a best-selling book about Watergate and won virtually every major honor in broadcast journalism, began his career in 1950 as an Associated Press reporter in Huntsville, Texas.

    He joined CBS News in 1962 and interviewed every U.S. president from Dwight D. Eisenhower to Bush and most major world leaders including Saddam Hussein (news - web sites) in 1990 after Iraq (news - web sites)'s invasion of Kuwait.

    Paul Levinson, head of Fordham University's media department said that if CBS's internal investigation into its recent reporting scandal found Rather culpable, then it was appropriate for him to resign.

    "But this black mark does not negate the decades of heroic journalism that Rather has given us," Levinson said.

    Rather's announcement just before longtime rival Tom Brokaw retires from "NBC Nightly News" in December, leaves Peter Jennings of ABC's "World News Tonight" as the last of the current Big Three network news anchors.

    One CBS insider told Reuters the names most mentioned as likely replacements for Rather are CBS White House reporter John Roberts and "60 Minutes II" correspondent Scott Pelley.
    - The baby will be back -

  • #2
    I was beginning to think he might not quit, considering its been 2 months since that incident happened, but I guess he felt he needed to.
    Prepare For Takeoff - Spread Your Wings - Take Flight at Little Rock National


    • #3
      Don't let the door hit ya where the good lord split ya


      • #4
        Al Gore right now is like a porcipine in a balloon shop
        Try to catch me flyin dirty...


        • #5
          This was inevitable. (or is it inevidable?)


          • #6
            Another long and interesting carreer now closing
            Another younger talent will get her/his chance at her/his turn

            On this side of the pond, same age, same era of starting, and same occasional ruthlessness
            Very long time soccer commentator Thierry Roland is also to set down. The reason is a bad comment too far ...

            Thanks for visiting
            *Avimage's Monthly Slide list *