Longtime political analyst on CNN, Mark Sheilds, passed away at the age of 85. The anchor of PBS NewsHour confirmed that Shields died on Sunday morning. Shields, who retired in 2020, was seen as a liberal political commentator on the TV news.
He spent 33 years in the TV news industry and witnessed six presidential administrations.
Shields was well known for his "encyclopedic knowledge of American politics, his sense of humor and mainly his big heart," tweeted Judy Woodruff, the anchor of NewsHour.
Shields, who graduated from the University of Notre Dame, is originally from Weymouth, Massachusetts.
Shields Worked For Political Campaigns
He worked for several local and national Democratic political campaigns, including Robert F. Kennedy's 1968 run for president, and gained first-hand experience that he later shared with readers and viewers, according to CNN.
From 1988 to 2005, he co-hosted Capital Gang, a weekly panel discussion show on CNN.
Shields Died of Kidney Failure
According to NewsHour spokesperson Nick Massella, Shields has died of kidney failure in his Maryland home in Chevy Chase.
"I am heartbroken to share this..the @NewsHour's beloved long-time Friday night analyst Mark Shields, who for decades wowed us with his encyclopedic knowledge of American politics, his sense of humor and mainly his big heart, has passed away at 85, with his wife Anne at his side," Woodroof said in his tweet.
She also revealed that Shields had an unsurpassed knowledge of politics and a passion, joy, and irrepressible humor that shone through in all his work. She also underlined that Shields, who loved most politicians, was always bold to call out injustice.
According to WPR, Shields showed his famous sense of humor in a 2006 commentary for NPR's "This I Believe" series, writing: "I admire enormously the candidate able to face defeat with humor and grace. Nobody ever conceded defeat better than Dick Tuck who, upon losing a California state senate primary, said simply, 'The people have spoken ... the bastards.' "