Dan Rather’s Advice for Election Day: ‘Think About the Day After’

The veteran newsman says this year’s election is the worst in the country’s history. “It’s nasty enough to gag a buzzard.”

By Joy DiazNovember 1, 2016 11:17 am

With one week until Election Day, one of the country’s most well-known Texans has a suggestion for the rest of the country: start thinking about the day after.

Veteran broadcast journalist Dan Rather, whose documentary debuts tonight on Mark Cuban’s AXS network, poses a quandary: even assuming a Clinton victory, why should Americans of all stripes continue to care about the Trump phenomenon?

Rather says that Donald Trump – “whether you like him, don’t like him or don’t know what to think” – represents the feelings of a large swath of Americans.

“He will get no less than 36 percent of the vote, could get 42 percent or more of the vote,” he says, “and if we have any hopes of having healing and a reunifying of the country, then what Trump represents… we’re going to have to deal with.”

If elected, Trump has said he will sue those institutions of journalism that he thinks have been against him.

“We’ve never had a Presidential candidate,” Rather says, “or anybody in the Presidency – even during the worse of the Nixon-Agnew time – who were that out front by saying, in advance, ‘I’m going to punish the press for doing their job.'”

Rather says people need to “see clearly where we’re going” and as a lifetime member of the press, he says he’s made mistakes but a free press is essential to our government.

“A free and independent press, fiercely independent press when necessary, is the red beating heart of democracy,” Rather says. “We either subscribe to the idea that we need a free press… or we need a press that cowers.”

Post by Hannah McBride.