Hearing about the McLaughlin Group makes PBS Ombudsman Michael Getler feel like “that airline cabin attendant who grabbed a beer and hit the escape chute,” he writes in this week’s Mailbag. He’s written about the show in many previous columns and has received “literally thousands” of emails, mostly complaints, about the program. In this recent batch, one viewer writes about giving up and turning the show off after two panelists on a recent segment “spouted spiels of foundationless propaganda like they had suddenly become right wing nut jobs.” Another called panelists “racists.” Compounding the problem is that some viewers consider it a PBS show, although it is not branded as such on the screen. It’s produced by McLaughlin’s production company, Oliver Productions, at WUSA-TV, a Gannett/CBS-affiliate in Washington, D.C.
I remember back in the 1990’s the McLaughlin Group aired on KNBC in LA before the NBC Finals back then.