Sam Donaldson, Unremembered

Discussing the retirement of ABC‘s Sam Donaldson, Washington Post media reporter Howard Kurtz writes (2/16/09):

Donaldson’s detractors viewed him as a liberal blowhard, and there were certainly times when his mouth outran his brain.

I would certainly count FAIR as being among Donaldson’s detractors, and we viewed him as someone who was frequently mistaken for being liberal because he shouted questions at Ronald Reagan. And the examples Kurtz gives of Donaldson’s reporting–promoting a Colin Powell presidential bid, suggesting that Bill Clinton should resign over the Lewinsky scandal–do not exactly illustrate a progressive crusader. Though Kurtz does report that Donaldson was proud of a report that tracked down a Nazi war criminal; maybe that makes him a liberal in Kurtz’s book.

About Jim Naureckas

Extra! Magazine Editor Since 1990, Jim Naureckas has been the editor of Extra!, FAIR's monthly journal of media criticism. He is the co-author of The Way Things Aren't: Rush Limbaugh's Reign of Error, and co-editor of The FAIR Reader: An Extra! Review of Press and Politics in the '90s. He is also the co-manager of FAIR's website. He has worked as an investigative reporter for the newspaper In These Times, where he covered the Iran-Contra scandal, and was managing editor of the Washington Report on the Hemisphere, a newsletter on Latin America. Jim was born in Libertyville, Illinois, in 1964, and graduated from Stanford University in 1985 with a bachelor's degree in political science. Since 1997 he has been married to Janine Jackson, FAIR's program director. You can follow Jim on Twitter at @JNaureckas.