Andrea Mitchell

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Andrea Mitchell
Mitchell in 2023
Born (1946-10-30) October 30, 1946 (age 77)
Alma materUniversity of Pennsylvania
OccupationNews anchor
Years active1967–present
Notable credit(s)NBC News Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent,
NBC Nightly News,
Andrea Mitchell Reports
TitleNBC News Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent
NBC News Chief Washington Correspondent
Host, Andrea Mitchell Reports
  • Gil Jackson (div. 1970s)
  • (m. 1997)

Andrea Mitchell (born October 30, 1946)[1] is an American television journalist, anchor and commentator for NBC News, based in Washington, D.C.

She is NBC News' chief foreign affairs & chief Washington correspondent, reporting on the 2008 presidential election campaign for NBC News broadcasts, including NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, Today and MSNBC. She anchors Andrea Mitchell Reports, which airs from noon to 1 p.m. ET weekdays on MSNBC. Mitchell has both appeared on and guest hosted Meet the Press. She was also often a guest on Hardball with Chris Matthews and The Rachel Maddow Show.

In 2019, Mitchell earned a Lifetime Achievement Emmy for her journalistic work.[2]

Early life, education, and early career[edit]

Mitchell was raised in a Jewish family,[3] from New Rochelle, New York, the daughter of Sydney Mitchell, a businessman, and his wife, Cecile Mitchell.

Her father was the chief executive officer and partial owner of a furniture manufacturing company in Manhattan. He was also the president of Beth El Synagogue in New Rochelle for 40 years. Her mother was an administrator at the New York Institute of Technology in Manhattan.[4] Her brother Arthur and his wife, Nancy Mitchell, moved to British Columbia in the 1970s. He has dual American and Canadian citizenship, becoming a member of the Legislative Assembly of Yukon and the leader of the Yukon Liberal Party in the 2000s.[5]

Mitchell is a graduate of New Rochelle High School.[6] She went on to attend the University of Pennsylvania, where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in English literature in 1967. While at Penn, she served as news director of student radio station WXPN. Staying in Philadelphia after graduation, she was hired as a reporter at KYW radio. She rose to prominence as the station's City Hall correspondent during the Mayor Frank Rizzo’s administration and also reported for sister station KYW-TV.

She moved in 1976 to CBS-affiliate WTOP (now WUSA) in Washington, D.C. Two years later, Mitchell moved to NBC's network news operation, where she served as a general correspondent. In 1979, she was named NBC News' energy correspondent and reported on the late-1970s energy crisis and the Three Mile Island nuclear accident. Mitchell also covered the White House from 1981 until becoming chief congressional correspondent in 1988.[7]

NBC News and MSNBC[edit]

Mitchell reporting from the floor of the 2008 Democratic National Convention
Mitchell interviewing Secretary of State John Kerry in 2015

Mitchell has been with NBC News since late July 1978. She has been its chief foreign affairs correspondent since November 1994.[8] Previously, she served as chief White House correspondent (1993–1994) and chief Congressional correspondent (1988–1992).[7]

In 2005, Mitchell's book, Talking Back... to Presidents, Dictators, and Assorted Scoundrels, (ISBN 978-0-143-03873-3), was published. It chronicles her work as a journalist.

Since 2008, Mitchell has hosted Andrea Mitchell Reports on MSNBC.


Plame affair[edit]

A report in The Washington Post ("Bush Administration Is Focus of Inquiry CIA Agent's Identity Was Leaked to Media" by Mike Allen and Dana Priest, The Washington Post, September 28, 2003) that Mitchell had leaked Valerie Plame's identity led to her being questioned by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. While Mitchell never appeared before the investigating grand jury or in I. Lewis Libby's trial, she was on the subpoena list as a person of interest.

In October 2003, on the Capitol Report, Mitchell made a statement that Libby's defense construed to mean it was widely known among journalists that Joe Wilson's wife was in the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), a position she later clarified by answering the question of how widely known it was in Washington that Wilson's wife worked for the CIA:[9] "It was widely known amongst those of us who cover the intelligence community and who were actively engaged in trying to track down who among the foreign service community was the envoy to Niger. But, frankly, I wasn't aware of her actual role at the CIA, and the fact that she had a covert role involving weapons of mass destruction, not until Bob Novak wrote it."

Sudanese incident[edit]

During a July 2005 news conference in Khartoum, Mitchell was forcibly ejected from a room after asking Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir some pointed questions. They included: "Can you tell us why the violence is continuing?" (referring to genocide in Sudan's Darfur province) and "Can you tell us why the government is supporting the militias?" "Why should Americans believe your promises?"[10] At this point two armed security guards grabbed her and forcibly shoved her out of the room.

After the incident Mitchell said, "It is our job to ask. They can always say 'no comment'... but to drag a reporter out just for asking is inexcusable behavior."[10]

Prior to the incident, Sudanese officials expressed reservations about allowing American newspaper or television reporters to join the Sudanese press pool. Sean McCormack, the State Department's assistant secretary for public affairs, said to his Sudanese counterpart, "I'll convey your desires about not permitting reporters to ask questions, but that's all I'll do. We have a free press." McCormack's Sudanese counterpart replied, "There is no freedom of the press here."[11][12]

Offensive remarks[edit]

During an appearance on MSNBC on June 5, 2008, Mitchell referred to the voters of the southwest Virginia region as rednecks.[13][14] On June 9, she apologized on air, saying "I owe an apology to the good people of Bristol, Virginia, for something stupid that I said last week. I was trying to explain, based on reporting from Democratic strategists, why Barack Obama was campaigning in southwest Virginia, but without attribution or explanation, I used a term strategists often use to demean an entire community. No excuses, I'm really sorry."[15]

Having been led to believe that a clip showed that presidential candidate Mitt Romney was impressed by a touchscreen at a Wawa convenience store, Mitchell and contributor Chris Cillizza laughed when it was shown on Andrea Mitchell Reports,[16] alluding to a widely held myth that George H. W. Bush was unfamiliar with a supermarket scanner in an incident during his 1992 campaign.[17] She suggested this might be Romney's "supermarket scanner moment."[18] She said, "I get the feeling that Mitt Romney has not been in too many Wawas along the roadside of Pennsylvania." The full clip puts his comments in the context of his claim that Wawa's "touchtone keypads" (touchscreens) show efficiency in the private sector compared to his statement that it took multiple filings of a 33-page government form for an optometrist to change his address.[18][19][20][21]

Mitchell briefly addressed complaints from the Republican National Committee and Romney's campaign the following day. Introducing the full clip, Mitchell stated, "The RNC and the campaign both reached out to us, saying that Romney had more to say on that visit about federal bureaucracy and innovation in the private sector. We didn't get a chance to play that, so here it is now."[19]

In February 2019, Mitchell characterized the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising as being against "the Polish and Nazi regimes." She apologized on Twitter for her comment. The Polish Institute of National Remembrance sued Mitchell in Polish court for alleging that Poland played a role in the Holocaust.[22]

Personal life[edit]

Mitchell with husband Alan Greenspan in 2000

She married her second husband, then Federal Reserve Chair Alan Greenspan, on April 6, 1997, following a lengthy relationship.[4] Previously, she was married to Gil Jackson; that marriage ended in divorce in the mid-1970s.

On September 7, 2011, Mitchell revealed that she had been diagnosed with breast cancer during a doctor's visit a few weeks earlier. It was caught early and treated.[23]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ October 30, 2013. Happy Birthday To New Rochelle's Andrea Mitchell. The Daily Voice. Retrieved: 15 March 2014.
  2. ^ Arkin, Daniel (July 15, 2019). "Andrea Mitchell to receive lifetime achievement award at news Emmys". NBC News. Retrieved April 6, 2020.
  3. ^ Cantor, Danielle (undated). "Andrea Mitchell" Archived December 3, 2013, at the Wayback Machine. Jewish Woman. Retrieved August 2, 2013.
  4. ^ a b "Alan Greenspan, Andrea Mitchell". The New York Times. April 6, 1997.
  5. ^ Yukon Liberal Party Leader: Arthur Mitchell, Retrieved 11 February 2012
  6. ^ "List of Distinguished Alumni". New Rochelle High School. Archived from the original on December 20, 2008. see list of Distinguished Alumni
  7. ^ a b "Andrea Mitchell - NBCNightlyNews - About Us". NBC News. December 12, 2003. Retrieved February 5, 2013.
  8. ^ National Book Festival. "Andrea Mitchell". Library of Congress. Retrieved February 5, 2013.
  9. ^ [1] (PDF).
  10. ^ a b "TV reporter says she's angry after Sudan incident". Augusta Chronicle. July 23, 2005. Retrieved March 22, 2016.
  11. ^ "Daily Nightly: Brian previews Friday's newscast". NBC News. July 21, 2005. Retrieved December 28, 2012.
  12. ^ "Sudanese scuffle symbolic of disregard for own". NBC News. July 21, 2005. Retrieved December 28, 2012.
  13. ^ Linkins, Jason (June 13, 2008). "MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell Refers To Rural Virginians As 'Rednecks'". The Huffington Post. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
  14. ^ Calderone, Michael (June 9, 2008). "NBC's Mitchell to address "redneck" comment". Politico. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
  15. ^ MSNBC Live, MSNBC. June 9, 2008.
  16. ^ Byers, Dylan (June 18, 2012). "MSNBC mischaracterizes Romney remarks". Politico.
  17. ^ "Why There Aren't Supermarket Scanner Moments Anymore". June 20, 2012. Time. Retrieved July 13, 2013.
  18. ^ a b Wemple, Erik (June 19, 2012). "MSNBC faces pressure on Romney's Wawa moment". The Washington Post. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
  19. ^ a b Mirkinson, Jack (June 19, 2012). "MSNBC Romney Edit Draws Fire; Andrea Mitchell Briefly Addresses Controversy (Video)". The Huffington Post. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
  20. ^ Fallows, James (June 18, 2012). "Wawa vs. the Post Office: Bus-Capade Update". The Atlantic. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
  21. ^ Sullivan, Andrew (June 18, 2012). "A 33 Page Form To Change Your Address?". The Dish. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
  22. ^ Markusz, Katarzyna (March 1, 2019). "Poland Institute Sues NBC's Mitchell for Conflating Poland with Nazis". The Jerusalem Post. Jewish Telegraphic Agency. Retrieved March 2, 2019.
  23. ^ "NBC's Andrea Mitchell reveals she has breast cancer". September 7, 2011. Retrieved September 7, 2011.

External links[edit]

Preceded by
John Palmer
NBC News Chief White House Correspondent Succeeded by
Brian Williams