Oct 31, 2004  •  Post A Comment

In a medium where success is measured by weeks, and a three-year run constitutes longevity, there are two simple reasons why “Face the Nation” has stood the test of time and today is celebrating a half-century of achievement. First, the program is timely and relevant. Second, the quality and professionalism of the people associated with it is unsurpassed.

Where too many others are concerned about “entertainment value,” “Face the Nation” has always understood that there is a need for civilized, balanced and informed discussion focusing on the issues ordinary Americans talk about at their own kitchen tables. The questions may be hard-hitting, but the tone encourages dialogue. It’s a program that values audience over sizzle.

Finally, in Bob Schieffer, “Face the Nation” has been blessed for more than a dozen years to have a moderator universally respected not only as an experienced shoe-leather reporter and astute analyst but also as one of the most decent and fair journalists in the business. In short, Mr. Schieffer and the team that has reached this 50-year milestone are at the top of their game, and the American public is the lucky beneficiary. n

Sen. Joseph Biden has served Delaware in the Senate since January 1973 and is the ranking Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. He has appeared on “Face the Nation” 35 times, placing him fourth on the all-time list of most appearances by a guest.