RIP - Jim Lehrer, Longtime PBS News Anchor, Is Dead at 85

For a long time he was partnered with Robert MacNeil

I watched him for several years. In fact he was the last news anchor I followed–as I switched to the internet for news coverage many years ago.

PBS is the last bastion of actual news reporting. Lehrer was one of the greats.

yes. very sad news.

[Random fact] For being so astute, he never voted. He said it was so he could remain unbiased. [/R.F.]

He seemed like a genuinely kind person who tried to live a virtuous life. I hope his end was peaceful.

I’m a fan.

Long-time fan. R.I.P.

He was the last of the news anchors that I trusted completely. Lehrer’s rules of reporting are worth reading. Most of today’s crop of reporters and anchors could learn a thing or nine.

I had a run-in with Lehrer maybe like 15 years ago. I was at jury duty in DC, and voir dire was run by filing the courtroom full of the prospective jurors, the clerk reading a bunch of questions, and people raising their hands to respond to the questions. (For example, please raise your hand if you have an infirmity that may preclude you from serving.) The clerk would then write down the seat number of the people raising their hands. (This seems like a terrible way to conduct voir dire, and each time I’ve returned for jury duty since then, this process was never repeated.)

Anyway, there were about 30 questions on a variety of topics. Lehrer raised his hand for nearly every single one that was halfway plausible.

“Does anyone have a member of law enforcement in their family?” [Lehrer raises hand]
“Does anyone have a family member who has been convicted of (whatever it was)?” [Lehrer raises hand]

Okay, those are explainable. What really caught my attention was…

“Does anyone feel like they would be unduly biased toward the defense in a case such as this?” [Lehrer raises hand]
“Does anyone feel like they would be unduly biased toward the prosecution or the police in a case such as this?” [Lehrer raises hand]


Anyway, I share this just for the laughs. But I think he was a truly outstanding journalist, and as great as his accolades and recognitions were, still insufficient. It is obscene to even attempt to compare the vast majority of today’s television personalities who appear on “news” channels to Lehrer.