Les Moonves, the president and CEO of CBS, took his wife, the former CBS news anchor Julie Chen, on a date on June 6 -- to a star-studded Beverly Hills Democratic Party fundraiser starring President Obama. He told a reporter for the Los Angeles Times of his respect for Obama, who he said "has shown great leadership" -- by bringing his support for gay marriage out of the closet.
Did I mention he runs CBS News?
Moonves tried to say, "I run a news division. I've given no money to any candidate." No, of course not. He merely donated between $2,500 and $25,000 to the Democratic National Committee's LGBT Leadership Council, which will helpfully pass it along to the candidates of their choosing. Then he acknowledged what many have worked decades to emphasize and which the likes of Moonves have steadfastly denied all along: "Ultimately, journalism has changed ... partisanship is very much a part of journalism now."
Byron York of the Washington Examiner asked CBS spokesman Dana McClintock whether Moonves was referring to CBS News. McClintock sent back a four-word response: "No he was not." Of course not.
Moonves is living that leftist bias by his very appearance at a glitzy Hollywood DNC buck-raking event. It had all the political finesse of former CBS anchor Dan Rather showing up at a Travis County Democratic Party fundraiser in Austin, Texas, to please his eco-activist daughter Robin in 2001.
Democrat Dan had some curious things to say when exposed. Rather said he "wouldn't be surprised" if critics use the incident to call him a closet Democrat. "I'm going to get that criticism whether I deserve it or not." Rather claimed he hadn't realized beforehand that the event was a fundraiser.
Rather had the denial act down. As Bernie Goldberg said Monday on Fox, "If you hooked Dan Rather up to a lie detector machine and said, 'Was there a liberal bias when you were the anchorman of the "CBS Evening News,"' he would say no, and the needle wouldn't budge. I mean, he's not lying; he's delusional."
That was then. Today the denial of partisanship is ancient history at CBS.
Douglas Brinkley's new biography, "Cronkite," of CBS News legend Walter Cronkite exposes the degree to which this partisan approach to politics has been part of the CBS DNA -- forever.
In a shocking piece in Newsweek, Howard Kurtz announced that Cronkite pulled scams that could get an anchorman fired today.