When Michael Kinsley left “Crossfire” in 1996, I jumped into the pool of liberals trying to take his seat – and won the job.
Well, actually, I only won half his job. Because, I was told, I would share the position of co-host on the left – alternating, every other week, with Geraldine Ferraro.
And I was thrilled. Not only to join CNN and “Crossfire,” the best debate show on television. But, especially, for the chance to work with one of my real heroes.
I was there as a reporter at the 1984 Democratic Convention in San Francisco, when Walter Mondale chose Gerry Ferraro as his vice-presidential running mate. And, like almost everyone else in the hall, I stood there with tears running down my face as she made history accepting the nomination: the first Italian-American and the first woman on a national ticket!
Geraldine Ferraro was a real trail-blazer in so many ways. She led the fight on so many important issues. Unlike so many politicians today, she elevated the level of debate and made you proud to be involved in politics.
But, as I learned, too, she was also a wonderful person, a devoted mother, a loving wife, a loyal friend – and so much fun to be around.
We will miss the voice of Geraldine Ferraro. But we are a better country today because she walked among us.
That’s my parting shot for today.