Jan 23, 2020 10:20 PM

Longtime PBS host, debate moderator Jim Lehrer dies at 85

Posted Jan 23, 2020 10:20 PM
Jim Lehrer at the 2007 Texas Book Festival, Austin, Texas / <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_Lehrer#/media/File:Jim_lehrer_2007.jpg">Photo by Larry D. Moore CC BY-SA 3.0</a>
Jim Lehrer at the 2007 Texas Book Festival, Austin, Texas / Photo by Larry D. Moore CC BY-SA 3.0

By MARK KENNEDY and DAVID BAUDER, Associated Press

A longtime host of the nightly PBS "NewsHour" whose serious, sober demeanor made him the choice to moderate 11 presidential debates, has died. Jim Lehrer was 85.

He and longtime partner Robert MacNeil began nightly reports on PBS in 1975. The show featured detailed reports and discussions of politics, international relations, science, and even the arts.

MacNeil stepped down from the show in 1995. Tributes poured in from colleagues and watchers alike, including from Fox News' Bret Baier, who called Lehrer "an inspiration to a whole generation of political journalists — including this one."