Will the TV reporters please clear the aisles?
Walter Cronkite: THIS is WAL-ter CRON-kite, coming to you from the Democratic National Convention, an event that will go down in history as the last convention to be covered by me. And if I may, this reporter would like to inject a personal note. I want to thank all the millions and millions of people who've sent flowers, candy and pictures of Dan Rather with mustaches drawn on them. And now let's go to the podium for the invocation.
Voice from podium: The invocation for today's session will be given by his eminence, Walter Cronkite.
Walter: Oh, jeepers! I almost forgot. While I go down to the podium, let's go to Dan Rather on the floor. Come in, million-dollar Danny.
Dan Rather: Thank you, Walter, and if I may inject a personal note here, I would just like to say, that was one of the finest introductions of a floor reporter you have given in your long and distinguished career. Yes, Walter, you've been sitting on your duff in that anchor chair for many years -- many, many, many years. Oh, a great, great, great many years!
Walter: Can it, Dan. Let's hear some of that million-dollar reporting of yours.
Dan: From here, Walter, it looks like this convention is going to be one of the great stories of the century, perhaps the most exciting political event I personally have ever covered and, of course, I've covered many exciting events, from the Vietnam war to the Freedom March to my own personal attack on Mount Whatsis in Afghanistan. Whew, that was a nail-biter, I'll tell you. Back to you, Walter.
Walter (from podium):. . . forever and ever, Amen. And now, let's go to Phil Jones.
Phil Jones: Walter, Sen. Kennedy has just made a speech conceding the nomination to President Carter. Kennedy said he will support Carter absolutely and will do everything he can to contribute to the ticket. Of course, Walter, this is obviously a thinly veiled attempt to undermine the Carter candidacy and gather more support for Kennedy. And there are questions about Chappaquiddick that remain unanswered.Now over to Harry Reasoner.
Harry Reasoner: Walter, from where I stand, there's an antiseptic look to the proceedings, a blinding fluorescent glow and a lot of quiet standing around.
Walter: That's because you've locked yourself in the men's room, dummy. And now, here with me in the booth are President Carter, Rosalynn Carter, Sen. Kennedy, Bob Hope and My Mother.
Barbara Walters, outside Walter's booth: Walter! You let me in there this minute or I'll hold my breath till I turn blue!
President Carter: Thank you, Walter, and may I say on behalf of all of us how much we're going to miss you here in the anchor booth you have filled so well. I'm not sure we Democrats are going to be able to hold a convention without you.
Walter: Thank you, Mr. President, and now let's go down to the podium to see if anything is happening there.
Voice from podium: . . . and so I move that we disband the Democratic Party and make Ronald Reagan our unanimous choice for president of the United --
Walter: No, nothing happening there. Let's go back to Dan Moneybags Rather on the floor. Dan, does this look like an open convention to you, or are we going to have to create our own conflicts in order to keep the viewers interested?
Dan: Walter, I'll answer that in my own inimitable way in a moment, but first, if I may, I'd like to say that your interview just now with President Carter was one of the finest of your long and distinguished career. Why, in all the dozens and dozens of years you've been --
Walter: Dan, start earning that cool five mill, will you please?
Dan: Well, Walter, I have a delegate here who has given me one of the great scoops of all my days in journalism. Would you repeat what you told me to the cameras, sir?
Delegate: Sure, Mr. Rather. But first, would you autograph this funny hat for my wife and kiddies?
Dan: Yes, yes, please, you're toying with my dignity.
Delegate: Oh, okay. Anyway, I hae it on good authority that it's going to be Lady Bird Johnson on the first ballot.
Dan: What a scoop! What a story! That's truly one of the most extraordinary things I have ever heard. This is one of the great moments in broadcast journalism! Why, to think that I, Dan Rather, who braved the hellfires of Afghanistan --
Walter: Dan! Dan!
Dan: Yes, Walter?
Walter: Ask him where he heard that.
Delegate: Oh, I heard it from that guy over there.
Dan: That guy over there?
Delegate: Yeah, that guy over there from ABC News.
Dan: Back to you, Walter.
Walter: Well let's pop back to the podium and see if anything is happening there.
Voice from podium: . . . and so I put it to you, ladies and gentlemen, that there is one man and only one man who can lead this nation into the greatness of the '80s, and you all know who I mean.Yes, the grandfather of our country, Walter Cronkite!
Delegates in unison: We want Walter! We want Walter! Four more years! Four more years!
Walter: And that's the way it seems to be. For CBS News, this is Walter Cronkite saying, Walter Cronkite!