Usually, when old news anchors ride off into the sunset, they reappear as virulent liberals. Think Walter Cronkite, Tom Brokaw, Dan Rather.
Especially Dan Rather. He anchored the CBS News for 24 years, taking over the chair from Uncle Walter. And after his career imploded over some seriously shoddy reporting, Rather jumped on the crazy liberal train, parroting whatever prominent liberals were saying around him. Just this week, the purveyor of folksy said about President Trump, “Much of the time, I sense the public has a sense that they’re facing a manure spreader in a windstorm.”
But Ted Koppel, the ABC News international correspondent who went on to anchor the nightly news and hosted the news magazine show “Nightline” for 25 years, is a different breed.
By that we mean honest — and surprisingly unbiased.
“I’m terribly concerned that when you talk about the New York Times these days, when you talk about the Washington Post these days, we’re not talking about the New York Times of 50 years ago. We are not talking about the Washington Post of 50 years ago,” Koppel said March 7 at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in a clip that first reported by NewsBusters.
“We are not talking about The Washington Post of 50 years ago. We’re talking about organizations that I believe have, in fact, decided as organizations that Donald J. Trump is bad for the United States,” he said.
Koppel said opinion is now clearly evident in what are supposed to be straight news stories.
In the run-up to the 2016 election, Koppel said, “I turned to my wife, and I said The Times is absolutely committed to making sure that this guy does not get elected. So his perception that the establishment press is out to get him doesn’t mean that great journalism is not being done. It is. But the notion that most of us look upon Donald Trump as being an absolute fiasco, he’s not mistaken in that perception, and he’s not mistaken when so many of the liberal media, for example, described themselves as belonging to the Resistance.”
“What does that mean? That’s not said by people who consider themselves reporters, objective reporters of facts,” the veteran newsman said. “That’s the kind of language that’s used by people who genuinely believe, and I rather suspect with some justification, that Donald Trump is bad for the United States, and they’re betting that the sooner he’s out of office, the better they will like it. Whether that happens by virtue of indictment, impeachment or election, we’ll see.
Then, the coup de grace: “We are not the reservoir of objectivity that I think we were.”
Unlike so many other former anchors, Koppel has remained and unbiased newsman, even in retirement. And he loves raking the media over the coals shen he gets a chance. Last year, appearing with Brian Stelter on CNN, Koppel bluntly said, “CNN’s ratings would be in the toilet without Donald Trump.”
Fox News senior political analyst Brit Hume agreed with Koppel’s assessment, and said opinion is now clearly evident in so-called news stories.
“I did work with Ted Koppel for many years,” Hume said on “Tucker Carlson Tonight.” “He’s old-school much as I am. We come out of the same tradition, which is neutrality in news coverage, opinion is reserved for columnists and editorial writers. In broadcast journalism, you have certain commentators, and you have correspondents that cover the news.”
“Those lines of separation have become increasingly blurred, and in the age of Trump, as Koppel suggested, they’ve gone completely out the window,” Hume said.
Hume said journalists are now fully part of the “Resistance,” a movement by liberals to, as Hume put it, “undo this presidency.”
“Because of the sense among journalists that the election of Donald Trump constituted a national emergency and it was their duty as patriots to resist it and to do all they could to undo this presidency,” Hume said. He added that Watergate is moving some journalists to believe they should try to take down Trump.
“It created an atmosphere where I think journalists want to relive that. And here comes a target even more unpopular than Richard Nixon was in the person of Donald Trump, and they have gone about their business,” he said.