Former ‘The Five’ co-host Bob Beckel dies, colleagues remember him fondly

Bob Beckel, former co-host of “The Five” and longtime Democratic strategist, died Monday night at the age of 73.

Beckel had an intermittent career with Fox News after first joining the network in 2000 to provide political analysis based on his years of work with Democrat politicians. From 1977-1980, Beckel served as the youngest Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for the Carter Administration.

As national campaign manager for Walter Mondale’s 1984 presidential campaign, Beckel successfully led the former vice president to the Democratic nomination.

Beckel was a mainstay in the media over the years, appearing on national news programs like “NBC Nightly News,” “CBS This Morning,” and “Good Morning America” and “Nightline” on ABC. In addition to Sunday morning news shows like “Meet the Press” and “Face the Nation” Beckel made quite an impact when he became a founding co-host on “The Five.”

Premiering in July 2011 on Fox News, the show was meant to be a temporary holder for the timeslot after Glenn Beck left the network to begin his own media company, The Blaze. Joined by current co-hosts Dana Perino and Greg Gutfeld, Beckel helped usher the program from a five-week run to one of the highest-rated shows in cable news.

Beckel also spent 10 years as a columnist for USA Today between 2005 and 2015 where he worked alongside Cal Thomas to produce “Common Ground.” Thomas remembered his longtime colleague and friend on social media.

“We did so many things together,” Thomas wrote in part, “and I hope we modeled what two people of different political persuasions can be like when they love one another.” In addition to their column, the two penned a book together by the same name, “Common Ground.”

Beckel also documented his struggles with substance abuse in his autobiography, “I Should Be Dead: My Life Surviving Politics, TV, and Addiction.”

After a brief stint with CNN in 2015, Beckel returned to “The Five” until parting ways with Fox News in 2017.

Many of his former colleagues expressed their sentiments in the hours after hearing the news.

Eric Bolling, another alum from “The Five” shared a memory of coming to his friend’s aid even though the two were “arch-nemesis” of the program.

Katie Pavlich, another co-host of “The Five” also recalled him fondly.

Sean Hannity remarked that, despite their politics, “he and I got along great” and that his children referred to Beckel as “Uncle Bob.” Hannity said he had even given Beckel a key to his house. “He was always full of joy, happiness, light, sunshine. He loved God and Jesus and we miss him already. God bless you, God speed, Bob Beckel.

Referring to Beckel as an “old-time liberal who you could fight with,” Laura Ingraham added, “we always had a laugh afterward.”

In addition to his brother, actor Graham Beckel, Bob Beckel is survived by his two children.


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