Rather Blather in Berkeley
Schell: This is a story, that if it had turned out differently, perhaps could have changed the election.
Rather: Well, I didn't think of it that way. That did not go through my head.
Schell: But how could it not have. I mean, it's just before and election
Rather: "It's very important that you know that I'm not the vice president in charge of excuses, and there are no excuses...it's not an excuse, but it's a fact, I went straight from the Republican convention to cover a major hurricane in Florida. And we had discussed this story before as a possible story, but to say I was busy with other things is not an excuse, but you say well "how could you not have thought of it". I didn't really think about much of it and for that I'm accountable and I should have thought more about it but I didn't. And things moved very quickly, but whether anyone wants to believe it or not, I didn't really think about it in those terms.
Translation: I had recently come from a political convention and I wasn't thinking about politics--that's not an excuse but it's my excuse.