Heading to Illinois, Scott Pelley Lauded For His ‘Old School’ Leadership On The ‘CBS Evening News’

By Alex Weprin 

Tomorrow “CBS Evening News” anchor Scott Pelley will be broadcasting live from Illinois, covering that state’s GOP primary. For Pelley, it is another chance to go where the story is, and hopefully provide a different take on the news than his competition on ABC or NBC.

In the Los Angeles Times, James Rainey writes that Pelley has settled into his role at The Eye network, and his taking an “old school” approach to the evening news. Among the changes, not worrying about the competition, and just doing your own thing:

Pelley has made his mark inside the CBS News studios on West 57th Street as well. He asked that studio monitors of competing newscasts be turned off. “We don’t watch,” he said. “We know who we are and the kind of broadcast we want to produce.” At his right elbow beside the anchor’s chair he installed a series of small framed photos and names of the CBS personnel, 15 in all, killed in the line of duty since the 1940s. He spends hours at the end each day in the “fishbowl” — the glass office of elbow-to-elbow desks where producers plot the night’s program.


CBS is still in third place, but it has been making up some ground. Pelley argues that is because of the journalism featured on the program, and not because of his demure presence at the anchor desk:

“We live in a much more skeptical age today, I think,” Pelley said. “There is not going to be a ‘Most Trusted Man in America’ because America is not as trusting as it used to be.”

“But what you can reach back to at CBS News is how those stories were written and reported,” he said. “I think that’s why our ratings are up … because we have been more fair and transparent in the reporting and we have done more original reporting. That’s what I know how to do.”