Larry King, Legendary Interviewer Who Often Hosted Minor Party Candidates, Has Passed Away

Legendary TV host and interviewer Larry King has died today at the age of 87.  A cause of death has not been announced, although King was reported to have been battling COVID-19 earlier this month.

King crossed paths with many third party candidates during his long career as a TV interviewer, perhaps most famously allowing his show to be used as a platform by billionaire Ross Perot to launch his 1992 presidential campaign.

Perot would become a frequent guest on King’s show, even agreeing to a high profile debate against Vice-President Al Gore over NAFTA.

King also went out of his way to host third party candidate forums on several occasions during his time with CNN, including this town hall with Libertarian Harry Browne, U.S. Taxpayers Party candidate Howard Phillips and Natural Law Party nominee John Hagelin.

Even after leaving CNN, King would continue to have candidates from outside the two major parties as guests on his various OraTV-produced programs.

In 2012, King moderated the Free And Equal presidential debate featuring former Governor Gary Johnson (Libertarian), former Congressman Virgil Goode (Constitution), Dr. Jill Stein (Green) and former Salt Lake City mayor Rocky Anderson (Justice Party).

King’s penchant for giving minor party candidates airtime on CNN was even parodied in a 1996 sketch on Saturday Night Live that featured Will Ferrell and Dana Carvey.

 

2 thoughts on “Larry King, Legendary Interviewer Who Often Hosted Minor Party Candidates, Has Passed Away

  1. dL

    King crossed paths with many third party candidates during his long career as a TV interviewer, perhaps most famously allowing his show to be used as a platform by billionaire Ross Perot to launch his 1992 presidential campaign.

    As I recall, Perot’s presidential campaign launch on King’s CNN show was not pre-planned. It went something like King asking Perot “Why don’t you run for president”? Perot responded, “no, ” but then qualified his initial response by saying he would run if “the people got him on the ballot in every state.” It seemed spontaneous. It certainly created a media firestorm. After that appearance, Perot more or less engineered 50 state ballot access and an early 1st place polling lead from the television studios of Larry King and Phil Donahue.

  2. Austin Cassidy Post author

    Yep, that’s pretty much how it happened. King recalls the episode in the video embedded below that paragraph.

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