WEB EXCLUSIVE! Watergate journalist delivers McBride Lecture

by Sarah Powell

On Wednesday, Oct. 9, award winning journalist, Carl Bernstein, delivered the McBride Lecture.

The lecture, titled “Dysfunction: The State of American Politics in Journalism Today,” was at 7 p.m. in Smith Chapel.

“Politics affects everything around us,” said John Epperson, professor of political science. “What we learn and know about politics is often found in journalism.”

When looking for a speaker this year, Epperson said they had no one certain in mind. He was looking for someone with something important to say, who is well known in a wider field.

They used an agency to help them find the speaker. Different people were suggested, but wouldn’t work out. Bernstein stood out according to Epperson and when they contacted him, he agreed to come.

Bernstein is best known for breaking the Watergate story with journalist Bob Woodard for the Washington Post in June of 1972. Their reporting is what connected President Richard Nixon to the break in at Watergate, which eventually led to his resignation.

He also has two award winning books that he co-wrote with Woodard called “All the President Men” (1974) and “The Final Days” (1976).

Bernstein also worked as a foreign correspondent for Time magazine during which time he wrote about Saddam Hussein’s loss of support among the Iraqis. This lead to him being kicked out of the country by the government just before the Gulf War.

Bernstein is still an active journalist and recently became the executive vice president and executive editor of Voter.com.

According to Epperson, no one can ignore the political process or the large part that journalism plays in the political process for the general public. Bernstein is an important factor in the history of politics and journalism.

The McBride Lecture is considered the biggest lecture of the year due to the fact that the school has the most money to pay for a prominent speaker.