His was a “voice of reason”?
“The Tonight Show’s” Jimmy Fallon praised former CBS News anchor Dan Rather, who was disgraced for reporting “fake news” about former President George W. Bush.
Clip via The Tonight Show” with Jimmy Fallon
Fallon brought Rather on as a guest, commending the former anchor at a time when news outlets and social media are in a frenzy over President Donald Trump and his cabinet picks and executive orders.
Fallon praised him saying, “I wanna say thank you for being the voice of reason on social media.”
He then asked the newsman,“Trump’s relationship with the press. Have you seen anything like it in 60 years?”
“No, I haven’t seen anything like it, and neither has anybody else,” Rather replied. “We’ve never had anything even approaching this.” He added that the Nixon years were the closest example of a rancorous relationship between news media and the White House.
In addition to Rather’s 2004 false report about George W. Bush’s service in the Texas Air National Guard, the veteran CBS newsman has engaged in other activities that were — at a minimum — questionable.
In 1988 he screamed “You made us hypocrites in the eyes of the world!” at then-Vice President George H. W. Bush over the Iran-Contra controversy.
Rather was also prone to mocking White House spokesmen and officials with “questions” such as “Say something in English for us.”
Fallon asked Rather to give his advice to current journalists. His answer was a classic display of “do as I say, not as I do.”
“Stay steady, stay respectful. But also, be relentless and remain aggressive,” he told Fallon. “That’s the proper role of the press. Our role is part of a system of checks and balances, to ask questions, to keep asking tough questions, to do deep digging, investigative reporting. That’s what we’re supposed to do. And I think the public, including the people who voted for Trump, by and large, understand that that’s a vital role. It doesn’t help when the president is so negative about the press.”
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