John McLaughlin Misses First Hosting of The McLaughlin Group in 34 Years

John McLaughlin this weekend missed his first hosting of The McLaughlin Group in more than 34 years, since the syndicated public affairs program made its debut on Jan. 1, 1982.

“I am under the weather,” McLaughlin explained in a note that prefaced this week’s telecast. His distinct, once-bellowing voice, heard in pre-taped intros, is “weaker than usual,” McLaughlin acknowledged. “Yet my spirit is strong and my dedication to the show remains absolute!”

Stepping in as this week’s host, Pat Buchanan noted the absence of the panel’s “distinguished leader” and, speaking on behalf of himself, Eleanor Clift, Clarence Page and Tom Rogan, said, “We miss him.”

McLaughlin, 89, has moderated the weekly round-table discussion of political issues since Day 1, but has actively participated in the conversation less frequently in recent months, sometimes merely introducing the next issue. His pre-taped, admittedly “weaker” voice can be heard introducing the final issue of this week’s program, at the 21:10 mark.

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25 Comments
  1. Jim says:

    Sleep it off, John. You should have known better than to go club-hopping with Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the night before taping.

  2. Btm says:

    Hope he heals fully and happily, soon.

  3. Jerri says:

    I was just watching an episode of Murphy Brown that had the McLAughlin Group on. Hope he gets better soon.

  4. HAP says:

    I don’t know how under the weather he was. Or maybe he’s in denial. The man is 89 and it has seemed to me that for many months, he has been fading. He was slow to speak and did slur words. I’m guessing it’s dementia. I’m no doctor, but a keen observer.

    • Aeol says:

      Please, give us more insight, non-Doctor.

    • Michael Summerset says:

      Dimentia is pretty broad for any sort of brain problems. It’s possible it’s an issue with the rest of his body, such as the heart or organs. There may also be a blood sugar or medication issues involved. Those sorts of problems are common after the age of 80. In just about any other profession he would have retired long ago. Of course there’s nothing to say he won’t live to 100 either, it’s just that he may no longer be up to doing the show.

    • BillyBobJohnson says:

      “I’m not a doctor, and I don’t even play one on TV, but here’s my medical opinion.”

      The guy is 89. It has been very obvious for a year or more that he’s slowly fading. As they said in the Old West, he just wants to go out with his boots on.

  5. Rich from NJ says:

    Hope he gets better soon. The Dr.’s concept is brilliant. A spirited think tank of ideological divergents. I esp. like the ‘salt of the earth’ wisdom of Mr. Buchanan.

  6. 2016 man says:

    Used to watch it for a laugh; had no idea this show was still on and that the panel has not changed in 15 years or so. MSNBC, CNN and Fox all do the same thing in “real time,” who needs a syndicated version that’s two days old? It’s like watching Weekend Update and hearing the same jokes that were on Jimmy Fallon or Colbert Tuesday or Wednesday.

  7. Gretchen fingerhut says:

    Miss you JOHN – TAKE yur time and GET WELL♡♡♡♡-a loyal viewer

  8. Adam Blessitt says:

    24 years I have been listening to the talk show,,, I will be 55 next month.. Please take care of your health…. I have laughed & said Wow so true….Thank you Feel better
    Peace!

  9. Patrick Forsythe says:

    I do hope he’s well soon. I’ve watched the McLaughlin group my entire adult life. Being able to draw on views that cross the ideological spectrum truly allows us all to see the heart of the matter. And John is the perfect person to draw these views to the center. I admire everyone that contributes, but most of all I admire John, his steadiness and his ability to cut through the partisanship and help us draw cinclusiins

  10. Might be time to hang it up John. This last show was unbearable to hear. John, do you hear Oliver barking?

  11. FREIDOON says:

    I have not missed his show since 1982.

    I will miss john and show will not be the same without him

  12. Edmund Singleton says:

    With a Trump on the rise this is no time to be without John McLaughlin and the group, as if there was ever a good time…

  13. With the rise of a Trump this is no time to be without a John McLaughlin or the group, as if there ever was a good time…

  14. BillyBobJohnson says:

    Saddest part of this is that they put that blowhard Buchanan in his chair.

  15. Kevin Charles says:

    The back on forth of views needs John McLaughlin (or his centrist replacement) to restrain and balance panelists, otherwise the show devolves into no better than a squabble. Get well soon John or name a replacement.

  16. So sad! I have always tried to watch every show for more then 15 years. It was a ritual with me. Even though I knew what position Eleanor Clift would take. She has a great deal of presence when she wants her position heard. Clarence Page (I don’t know as well)as the others. I have also always enjoyed the repartee between Eleanor and Pat Buchanan. In recent years as Dr. McLaughlin put it “the.boy” I have come to look.forward to Tom Rogan. I thought he is a marvelous addition and have even looked into his homepage. I noticed a couple of weeks ago that Dr. McLauglin did not seem to be using his right arm and that his voice was weaker. However, I admire that he did what he loved almost to the end.

    The nice memory of the McLaughlin Group was that even though it was obvious who supported what political party – it was done with style. I particularly loved his last question and then his famous “bye bye”. He will be missed . I hope you are able to honor him by continuing The McLaughlin Group. I will definitely miss his program.

  17. He will be sorely missed. I have thoroughly enjoyed watching him and his comments.

  18. He will be sorely missed. I have really enjoyed his comments -glad he lasted this long. I glory in his spunk as I am 84!!

  19. Daryl Wise says:

    A true original. I too have been watching this show for years and years. He really made an impact on me.

    “BYE-BYE” John, Thanks for your work.

  20. Allena says:

    Her I’ve watched this program for over 20 years. I didn’t think much last Sunday when he was missing. I just thought ok he’ll back next week. Well, this morning I heard the announcement and I was sadden. Didn’t always agreed with the show host, but I enjoyed hearing the round table vies every Sunday He will be missed and my prayers are with the family.

  21. B. Figueroa, Sr. says:

    Will miss John and his iconic show.
    Looked forward to his wonderful show and Sun ay morning will not be the same without him.