Sharyl Attkisson, the probing reporter at CBS News who often rankled the Obama White House with probing questions about Benghazi, the Fast and Furious scandal, and the failed green energy firm Solyndra, has resigned after more than two decades with the network.
The dogged reporter, whose colleagues called a “pit bull” because she would get onto a story and not let go of it, and whose computer was hacked during the height of her Benghazi investigation, left ahead of her contract after months of fruitless negotiations, Politico reported.
Frustrated by what she perceived as increasing liberal bias by the network, Attkisson also saw a rise in inappropriate outside influence by the network’s corporate partners, which ultimately led to a dearth of aggressive investigative reporting, sources told the politics website.
Others within the network, however, perceived her pursuit of scandal-laced stories within the Obama administration as agenda-driven, though based on her Emmy-winning history with the network, some would say those claims are hard to substantiate. In the meantime, she will continue work on a new book, which is tentatively titled, “Stonewalled: One Reporter’s Fight for Truth in Obama’s Washington” — which addresses the challenges of reporting critically on the administration.
Sonya McNair, senior vice president for communications for CBS News, said in a statement: “CBS News veteran Sharyl Attkisson is leaving the news division to pursue other endeavors. We appreciate her many contributions and we wish her well.”
Attkisson came over to CBS News from CNN in 1993. She filled in as an overnight anchor for a couple of years before becoming one of the network’s Washington, D.C.-based correspondents.
In 2011, Attkisson wrote a comprehensive, award-winning report about the massive gun-walking scandal known as Fast and Furious. She said after the story ran, she was contacted by officials at the White House and Justice Department who she said screamed at her over the report.