Elian, a shaky stock market, and the possibility of a terrorist action will keep Dan Rather glued to his anchor seat for the next couple of days. With today commemorating the fifth anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing and Thursday marking the first anniversary of the massacre at Columbine High School, Rather was planning to broadcast the “CBS Evening News” live from both sites.
But the news division has decided that with so much going on during this busy news week, they’d rather have Rather stay close to home so he can be on hand in case something big breaks. “The Elian story has heated up and the stock market is so volatile. Maybe Oklahoma isn’t the place to be when other stories are hotter,” said Marcy McGinnis, VP, news coverage for CBS News.
There’s also concern among news divisions that this week — which also marks the anniversary of the FBI raid on the Branch Davidians compound in Waco, Texas — could spawn copy-cat attacks. “Because a lot of terrorist attacks occur on dates that mark past terrorist events, we are on standby in case something unfortunate happens,” said a spokesman for Fox News Channel.
But CBS News is not planning for tragedy. “If we knew where something might happen, we’d pour people into that place. But there’s nothing to do to gear up (for right now),” McGinnis said.