Why WAS Roger Mudd replaced with Dan Rather?

Roger Mudd was, at one point, slated to suceed Walter Cronkite on the CBS evening news; Mr. Mudd would fill in at the achor chair when Mr. Cronkite was away. Without explanation, Roger Mudd was replaced by Dan Rather, who eventually suceeded Walter Cronkite as the anchorman on the CBS evening news.

4 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer


    Mudd did an interview with Teddy Kennedy who was running for president. His asking an unexpected question caught Teddy by surprise and Teddy waffled on the answer. That hurt Teddy's poll ratings and he lost the nomination to Jimmy Carter. Some felt Mudd did not play the game properly.

    Rather in the meantime was doing 60 Minutes on Prime time. That gave him a lot of TV exposure without any risk of doing something controversial, such as asking a hard question of a Liberal Presidential Candidate, making him look bad.

    So when it came time to chose, they went with the guy who did not "rock the boat."

    But years later Rather "retired." Probably as a result of his airing the faked "Bush Memos." Clearly, Rather was not a newsman following in the footsteps of Morrow and Cronkite.

  • wdx2bb
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    While Mudd did fill in as the lead anchor at times, I don't recall that he was ever guaranteed the job when Cronkite retired. Rather had something of an electric reputation at that point, as he was coming off a very visible term as White House reporter -- particularly during the Watergate days. Mudd was a little less than electric on the air -- not that there's anything wrong with that. And I wouldn't be surprised if Rather was at least thinking of going elsewhere if he didn't get the anchor job. Mudd did jump, but to little effect.

    For the record, I don't think the Kennedy interview had much influence on the process. Kennedy got a softball question -- "Why do you want to be President?" -- and couldn't really answer it. The Senator really didn't find a justification for his campaign until it was too late.

  • 1 decade ago

    Because they'd rather Dan than Mudd.

  • 1 decade ago

    good question, i remember him and liked his style.

    his great great grandfather was the doctor who set john wilkes boothe's

    broken leg after he shot lincoln...he didn't know who he was but after that the statement someone could say about you that was royally insulting..."your name is mudd"

    also used to like a new york anchor named roger grimbsy..was very funny with his 11pm news. one night it was very cold out..and after he heard the weatherman say how cold it was gonna get..grimbsy said.

    "gee, you had better bring in your brass monkeys tonight" still can't believe he got away with that on a big network in the 70"s

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