John McLaughlin Dead

John McLaughlin, The McLaughlin Group Host Since 1982, Dead at 89

John McLaughlin, the host of TV’s The McLaughlin Group since its debut in January 1982, died on Tuesday at age 89.

The political commentator’s passing comes just days after he missed his first hosting of his eponymous syndicated public affairs program in more than 34 years. Longtime panelist Pat Buchanan stepped in as host for that episode.

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

An ordained priest and holder of a PhD (in philosophy), McLaughlin taught high school at a Jesuit prep school before becoming a writer for a Jesuit current affairs publication. Some time after that, the Vietnam War opponent sought (but lost out on) a seat in the United States Senate. In 1974, he served as a speechwriter for President Richard Nixon, and in the 1980s wrote for National Review.

McLaughlin had moderated The McLaughlin Group, weekly round-table discussion of political issues, since Day 1, but had actively participated in the conversation less frequently in recent months, sometimes merely introducing the next issue.

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36 Comments
  1. Brenda Johnson says:

    So very sorry enjoyed watching his show. RIP

  2. LADY_in_MD says:

    Very sad to hear condolences to his family friends and colleagues

  3. Mark Dildilian says:

    Enjoyed many years watching his show… Great topics, discussions and his voice was one in a million. John, RIP and say hello to Oliver. Be well.

  4. Phoebe says:

    What an awesome life John had!!! We followed him every week, every episode!!! Will sorely miss his remarks!!! A brilliant “host”!!!! So very intelligent about everything !!🏥🏥🏥🏥🏥

  5. Ed Rolle says:

    I have watched the program for years and always felt you got both sides on most issues. His object views will be missed. Rest in piece.

  6. TV Gord says:

    He started in 1982? Funny, I thought he was hosting that show all my life! (I guess I didn’t start living until I was 20.)

    It’s the end of an era!

  7. Gabrielle Ward says:

    The show will never be the same. Good man. Was able to do what he loved till the end. God bless and test in peace.

  8. Shirley LaRochelle says:

    I am so sorry to hear of John’s passing….My husband and I have been watching The McLaughlin Group and his One on One for many,many years. Always looked forward to it and the bantering even the ones I didn’t agree with.
    We will miss you so much John….and as you would say ” Bye Bye ” Rest in peace by friend.

  9. Donald Wood says:

    Sad to hear of the passing of John. Tried to never miss his show. He was a true conservative and more important an American with such strong principals. I will meet miss him very much. A journalist but an American first. RIP John you will be missed.

  10. Michael Skaggs says:

    I knew something was wrong after last week’s show. A great loss to the political world.

  11. Grumpiest of the grumpy old men! We will miss you, John! RIP!

  12. Bruce Stone says:

    I disagreed with the man on virtually every topic or issue–but valued his leadership and his talent as the precursor to the dozens of shows that litter the American television scene today.
    I was a youngster when I started watching—but rarely missed it since 1982.
    John–may you and oliver rest in peace my old friend.

  13. Steve says:

    John wa the original “fair & balanced” news man. Always enjoyed his programs Rest in peace.

  14. Ravi K Chawla says:

    His program was one of my favorites on the TV. I very much enjoyed the program for many years, now I will miss John Mcloughlin and his guests. May his soul RIP. I will miss you, John.
    Bye, Bye.

  15. PJ Guiles says:

    As a long time viewer of this political roundtable program, I’m saddened by this loss. Mr. McLaughlin’s declining health has been obvious for some months. He’s been increasngly frail and weak, but he nevertheless showed up each Friday to chair the show until just last week. “Bye-bye.”

  16. D. Durham says:

    John M’s show offered sophisticated and balanced political commentary. He will be truly missed.

  17. Deborah Giambusso says:

    R.I.P,I enjoyed The McLaughlin Group.

  18. Bobbi says:

    My brother had him as a teacher at Fairfield Prep during the 50s. We spent untold hours in the years following his departure from the priesthood, watching and arguing about his program and opinions. It was a blast! Watching him, a former Nixon speechwriter, during the entire Watergate debacle, was like nothing else before or since. My brother has been gone for a few years now and I was so sorry to hear about Mr. McLaughlin’s death today. But, I owe him a huge debt of gratitude for the wonderful hours I spent with my brother while watching his show. Rest in peace, sir.

  19. Steve Loeb says:

    OMG I will miss him so much. Watching him last week I knew something like this was imminent and here we are. RIP my political mentor – there wasn’t a week that passed without me anxiously waiting to hear your “prediction”

  20. Estelle Guerrero says:

    I love John McLaughlin and his insightful intellect regarding the issues that are important to Americans. I liked that he chose 3 other panellists that all have different viewpoints. RIP John McLaughlin.

  21. Gerald Curtin says:

    John was a forceful intellectual that had to be reckoned with by those who listened to him. His erudite use of the Queen,s English had me referring to my Webster,s more than once. I shall miss his “bye bye and “gobble gobble” and of course the use of his word “zeitgeist”. Thank you John.

  22. Kathy says:

    Always looked forward to the Friday night broadcast on PBS. My Dad got me watching him while I was in college 30 years ago. Still enjoyed the show! John is irreplacable

  23. Lee Reynolds says:

    He will be missed and remembered. A powerful voice and a great contribution to the discussion.

  24. Robert Hadley says:

    Anti war , yet was a Nixon guy?

  25. Daniel J Napoli says:

    I’ll miss John. I watch The Mclaughlin Group every Sunday morning. It’s just part of my Sunday morning routine. I hope the Group will continue to bring us great political debates in John’s memory and honor. Bye Bye John :o(

  26. TD Jakes says:

    I use to watch John on Sunday. Then stopped. John could have retired years ago & go golfing, fishing and being with family & friends. Maybe Pat B. might take over. Now John will give a detailed account at the judgment throne of God.

  27. Mark says:

    Sleep well dear friend . Your insights will be missed. Hope the group can find the courage to carry on for you and in your honor.

  28. Eric says:

    The passing of the legendary John McLaughlin marks the end of an era for the political talk genre. McLaughlin kept it real all these years, and his presence will be deeply missed.

  29. Jake says:

    I used to watch the show more as entertainment then information. My wife hated the show and all the shouting. Well, only one thing left to say, quoting John:
    BYE BYE!

  30. Tony de New York says:

    Thx!

  31. Joe D'Onofrio says:

    John McLaughlin has been a weekly part of my life from the first show to the very last. The McLaughlin Group debuted the same month and year that I received my Degree as an Educator. John’s tough probing questions and were present each week while I graded papers and wrote lesson plans, and John’s wit and brilliance carried me to my recent retirement. Mr. Mclaughlin taught me to be tough-minded and duly critical of public policy by considering sources and understanding motives and connections. His work seeking truth has forever enriched my life. Rest In Peace, John.

  32. Bob calton says:

    I never missed this show.

  33. Renato says:

    I love his voice. He always said issue one at the beginning of his show and ended with prediction Pat. May his soul rest in peace with the Lord

  34. Mr. Leslie D. Smith says:

    I began to watch The Group after seeing a satire by Dana Carvey, on Saturday Night Live. Back then the panelists were Jack Germound, Eleanor Cliff, Fred Barnes, Mort Condracke. I loved it then, and loved it to the end. I even adopted his signature “bye bye” line. RIP John. You’ll be missed.