Bob Shieffer: the Last Great American Reporter?

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Bob Schieffer’s last day as moderator of “Face the Nation” on CBS is today. I just want to mention that there are not many newscasters left that provide as much integrity as he does. Always respectful and fair in his questioning of both Republicans and Democrats, you never really knew if Schieffer was for his interviewee or against them. But, that’s exactly what all really good reporters are supposed to do: severely limit any personal bias they might have.

Tough questions the audience deserves to know can be asked without asking questions that are irrelevant and unnecessary for the audience to know (regardless of how sensational, ratings increasing that these other questions might allegedly be or how many other reporters seem to be asking them). Finally, good reporters should let the audience decide what they think on their own without telling the audience what they should think. Schieffer did all that and more.

Schieffer belongs to the same class of reporters that Walter Cronkite belonged to. This is a class of reporters that is quickly disappearing. In fact, it is my opinion that Schieffer might be the last one. Can Schieffer’s replacement truly bring the same type of integrity and quality to moderating that Schieffer brought to “Face the Nation?” My answer is, maybe, but Dickerson will have a very tough job in trying to match what Schieffer brought to the show. I have my doubts it can be done.

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