Rather Sues CBS, Viacom for $70 Million

Sep 19, 2007  •  Post A Comment

Former “CBS Evening News” anchor Dan Rather is seeking $70 million from his former network and parent company Viacom and three former bosses charging “intentional mishandling” of the aftermath of the “60 Minutes II” story that led to Mr. Rather’s exit from CBS News in 2006.
According to an Associated Press report Wednesday, Mr. Rather also named CBS Inc. President and CEO Leslie Moonves, Viacom Chairman Sumner Redstone and former CBS News President Andrew Heyward.
Shortly after the news of the suit broke, CNN announced that Mr. Rather will appear on “Larry King Live” Thursday night and will take viewer calls and e-mails.
The wire report about the filing said Mr. Rather seeks $20 million in compensatory damaged and $50 million in punitive damages.
A statement from CBS said: “These complaints are old news and this lawsuit is without merit.”
In the “60 Minutes II” story about President Bush’s Vietnam-era Texas Air National Guard service, some of the charges were based on documents that were quickly discredited.
Following an investigation by outsiders, four CBS News executives and producers left the network and Mr. Rather stepped down as “Evening News” anchor after 24 years in the role.
Mr. Rather now anchors and reports for a program bearing his name on HDNet.
“Dan Rather’s national reputation for excellent, non-partisan independent journalism was intentionally damaged by CBS, Viacom and their senior executives, who sacrificed independent journalism for corporate financial interests,” Mr. Rather’s attorney, Marty Gold, said in a statement. “A healthy democracy cannot flourish without an independent press. Dan Rather brings this lawsuit to further that principle and to restore his reputation, and if he is successful, he intends to donate substantial sums to further these ideals.”
Updated: 9/19/07 3:24 p.m. PT


  1. Wow. Rather needs to get on with his life, especially since he was in the wrong on this article and had his own little political agenda he was following. Now he’s just going to wind up looking like a bigger idiot by dragging this out in the open again and being exposed for the liberal bias that got him canned in 2005.

  2. Please tell us what “little political agenda” Rather was following in reporting the truth about Shrub the Moron–using your own words and with proper spelling, capitalization, punctuation, grammar and usage and by using other sources than wingnut blogs, newsmax.com and the web sites of Loofah Felafel and Rush Vicodin.

  3. C’mon, now, how about some actual discussion instead of partisan axe-grinding?
    What’s interesting to me about this move is the irony: Rather appears to be trying to rehabilitate his reputation as a journalist by abnegating responsibility for the reporting he puts his face on. In the long run, I can’t see how that is a good move, even if his case has merit.

  4. Since he knew the documents had no merit, yet ran with the story anyway — and this has all been proven, even by the liberal media (unless you were hiding under a rock during that time) — he really has no case. I hope he gets spanked in the press for all to see.

  5. Truth be told, CBS is just as much of fault as Rather because, in the end, CBS WAS his employer and the stories aired ON CBS. CBS didn’t have to air the story if they felt it wasn’t valid or newsworthy, but they did. It was CBS that gave him the resources to follow this story (and by the way, shouldn’t CBS and Rather have dug deeper into the story beyond the initial documents).
    Rather and CBS News had a bad source and both entities apologized for the initial report.
    However, because Rather was the face behind both the story and CBS News (and the fact that Katie Couric’s contract with NBC was winding down), CBS felt they had to get rid of Rather now rather than later.
    I’m wondering why, two years after his dismissal, Mr. Rather’s finally pursuing this lawsuit though.

  6. Dan Rather non-partisan? Excuse me while I laugh about that.
    Ok, I’m back. Rather has had it in for the Bush family since the 80’s. Remember the interview with Bush the First during the ’88 Presidential campaign? As for excellence in journalism, you just have to look as far as “The CBS Evening News with Empty Chair”. It looked like Rather had more or less gotten his biases, self-righteousness and holier-than-thou attitude under control, but apparently the Bush National Guard story was just too good to pass up. Wasn’t he the producer on that story?
    Now the attention junkie in him realizes that he’s going absolutely nowhere on HDNet and needs its fix. The lawsuit is the answer.

  7. Dan Rather new nickname should be
    Tonight (9/20) he is going to be on Larry King.
    Maybe CNN can promo it as…

  8. The documents were not disproven, merely uncorroborated. The cow jumped over the moon on this one! Can you believe that Bush Jr., son of a president of the United States, is the only member of his National Guard unit to get his papers lost? As a president’s son, those papers would have been under lock and key in perpetuity! So the Commander in Chief of the United States of America ran out on his National Guard responsibilities? Or was he just in alcohol and drug rehab?
    Again, the documents were not disproven, merely uncorroborated since his personal papers were “lost.” Isn’t America proud!

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