Pauley Back on NBC, Yearned for ‘Cool, Steady Hand’ of ‘Exceptional’ Obama
On Tuesday morning (March 9) Pauley reappeared on the Today show, which she co-hosted from 1976 to 1989 before spending more than a decade with Dateline NBC, as the narrator of a new monthly segment produced by the liberal AARP, “Your Life Calling Today,” about those 50-plus reinventing themselves. “We are welcoming back a very, underline ‘very’ good friend and familiar face around here, Jane Pauley,” Matt Lauer announced, explaining “she’s been working with AARP which has produced and sponsored a new series of reports for us.” Her first report looked at a woman who “left a lucrative career so she would have more time to knit socks.”
Not exactly hard-hitting political reporting, but it gives me a hook to share some 2008 video of Pauley praising Obama as she made appearances on his behalf. “Pauley called the last eight years a mistake and says America must make the right choice come election day,” WISH-TV channel 8 reporter Phil Sanchez related on the Indianapolis CBS affiliate’s Sunday, September 21, 2008 newscast. Just over a month later, following an event in Bloomington, sporting an Obama button she told Indiana University’s public TV station, WTIU:
I think the 21st century really hasn't started yet for this country. We have not gotten off to a good start and the rest of the world hasn't been waiting. So we, we can not only get it right this time but I kind of agree with Colin Powell that not only Barack Obama will be a good President he'll be an exceptional one and I so look forward to it!Pauley, who worked for the Indiana State Democratic Committee in the mid-1970s before jumping to NBC News, appreciated the freedom to express her political views, as if they never came through during her NBC years:
Well this is, this is new for me because I was in television news for 30 years and, and you know I would not have been approved of going public with my particular political position. That was between me and the voting booth. But I haven't been with NBC for three-and-a-half years and I am free to make a contribution and I hope I can make a contribution here in Indiana.The MRC reviewed Pauley’s later years at NBC with a Media Reality Check in 2003, “Jane Pauley’s ‘Unusual Empathy’ for Liberals,” which recalled how she once cued up Hillary Clinton: “What don't you do perfectly?”
The MRC’s Geoff Dickens tracked down the WTIU-TV channel 30 video on YouTube and Pauley’s 2008 campaign donation to Obama as listed by OpenSecrets.org (as Jane Trudeau) and by Doug Elfman in the Las Vegas Review-Journal, who provided a lengthy list of celebrity financial supporters: “The Biggest Stars Donate Gobs of Money to Obama.”
My Obama-Media “Revolving Door” list.