Flashback to 2000 VP Picks: Dan Rather Chided Bush-Cheney and Championed Gore-Lieberman

With this year's vice presidential picks expected any day now, time to go into the MRC archive for a look back to 2000 when Dan Rather's left-wing tilt still got air time on a major network.

When George W. Bush named Dick Cheney, Rather introduced the Tuesday, July 25, 2000 CBS Evening News story by relaying the derisive and negative Democratic spin against the GOP ticket:
In the presidential campaign, the official announcement and first photo-op today of Republican George Bush and his running mate Richard Cheney. Democrats were quick to portray the ticket as quote 'two Texas oilmen' because Cheney was chief of a big Dallas-based oil supply conglomerate. They also blast Cheney's voting record in Congress as again quote, 'outside the American mainstream' because of Cheney's votes against the Equal Rights for Women Amendment, against a woman's right to choose abortion -- against abortion as Cheney prefers to put it -- and Cheney's votes against gun control. Republicans see it all differently, most of them hailing Bush's choice and Cheney's experience.
But two weeks later, his glowing Tuesday, August 8, 2000 set up of the Gore-Lieberman pairing forwarded the Democratic ticket’s boasts about themselves which included a sly dig at Bush-Cheney:
Democratic presidential candidate Al Gore officially introduced his history-making running mate today, Senator Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut. History-making because Lieberman is of Jewish heritage and faith. The two started running right away. In their first joint appearance they gave a preview of the Gore-Lieberman fight-back, come-back strategy. Their message: They represent the future, not the past, and they are the ticket of high moral standards most in tune with real mainstream America.

Audio: MP3 audio of Rather on Bush-Cheney; MP3 of Rather on Gore-Lieberman.

As I observed at the time in the August 9, 2000 MRC CyberAlert: “Bias doesn’t get much more obvious or easy to see than this.”

The MRC's Kristine Lawrence rendered the old videotape into the above video clips.

Brent Baker
Brent Baker
Brent Baker is the Steven P.J. Wood Senior Fellow and VP for Research and Publications at the Media Research Center