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Political pundit Mark Shields dies aged 85 from kidney failure

Political pundit and columnist Mark Shields has died aged 85. Shields was a regular on PBS NewsTime for 33 years before retiring in 2020.

Shields died of kidney failure Saturday morning at his home in Chevy Chase, Maryland, NPR reported. His wife was by his side.

Shield’s former PBS colleague Judy Woodruff paid tribute to him on Twitter on Saturday:

Woodruff noted his former colleague’s sense of humor, which was evident in his criticism of disgraced former Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) following his infamous crotch shot tweet scandal. from 2011, on which Andrew Breitbart broke the news. Shields said at the time that Weiner was hungry for media attention and ripped the disgraced politician over his scandal.

“The most dangerous place in Washington is between Anthony Weiner, a camera and a microphone,” exclaimed Shields. “I mean, what’s a congressman, who wants to be mayor of New York, to have galleries of his crotch portraits available for distribution.”

Shields, a graduate of the University of Notre Dame in Weymouth, Massachusetts, served as a U.S. Marine before entering the political arena, as the AP noted:

He began his career in Washington as a legislative aide and speechwriter for Wisconsin Senator William Proxmire in 1965, according to “PBS NewsHour.” Three years later, Shields joined New York Senator Robert F. Kennedy’s presidential campaign and went on to work on numerous campaigns. In 1979 he began writing a column for the Washington Post which was later distributed by Creators Syndicate.

Shields started writing a column for the Washington Post in 1979, and in 1987 he joined NewsTimequickly becoming a mainstay of the program, the AP noted.

By taking:

He had collaborated with David Brooks since 2001 providing analysis and commentary in their weekly Shields & Brooks segment and at special elections and conventions and before that with David Gergen and Paul Gigot, according to “PBS NewsHour.” His tenure there spanned six presidencies.

In December 2020, he retired from his NewsTime segment.

The late commentator also worked as a “moderator and panelist on CNN’s ‘Capital Gang’ from 1988 to 2005 and a regular panelist on ‘Inside Washington,’ which aired on PBS and ABC, from 2005 to 2013,” the AP noted.

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