Dan Rather on the State of Political Coverage on TV News

By Alex Weprin Comment

dan-rather090310.jpgFormer “CBS Evening News” anchor and current host of “Dan Rather Reports” on HDNet Dan Rather visited the Poynter Institute this week, and spoke about the current state of TV news and journalism more broadly.

Rather criticized the current state of political coverage, arguing that corporate interests interfere with real reporting:

‘”The public is not well-served by political coverage as it is today,” said Rather, who did not exclude himself from this criticism. “In many important ways, very big business is in bed with big government and whoever’s in power in Washington, whether it be Republicans or Democrats … and this seriously affects news coverage.”

Rather, of course, famously parted ways with CBS after a story about Former President George W. Bush’s service in the National Guard was found to be based on faulty documents.

Rather sued CBS over his ouster, and most of the charges have since been dismissed.

Still, Rather continues to defend the report to Poynter:

“It was true then, it’s true now, and evidence of that is neither the president nor anyone close around him, so far as I know, (and I think I would know if they had), has ever denied the narrative of the story,” Rather said. “I don’t seek to go over this ground all over again, but I do think it’s important to point out that the story was true, and for those who didn’t like the story, for their partisan, political, or ideological reasons, that’s the reason they had to attack it so fiercely and, as it turned out, so effectively, I’m sorry to say.”