The hosts of "The Five" weighed in Monday on the outrage sparked by former ABC News White House Correspondent Sam Donaldson's endorsement of Mike Bloomberg in the 2020 election, as critics said the famed journalist was further damaging the already frayed credibility of the media.
"I don't think Donaldson did the media any favors if they are worried about their credibility," co-host Dana Perino said.
"Sam Donaldson was one of those people that, when they [on the] George H.W. Bush campaign would complain about media bias, it was people like Sam Donaldson that said, 'how dare you accuse us of media bias... we are journalists. We are fair and balanced ,'" she added.
Donaldson first endorsed the New York billionaire in a column for CNN, writing, "After a lifetime of reporting the news, now is the time for me to stand up as a private citizen and do everything in my power to help defeat Donald Trump and elect Mike Bloomberg the next president of the United States."
The public endorsement sparked plenty of anger. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, mocked the journalist and the so-called "nonpartisan" media on Twitter.
"The joke about Sam is that he said it was the first time in his career that he's made a political choice," co-host Greg Gutfeld reacted. "How blind does he have to be not to see his own bias?"
Jesse Watters blasted the newscaster for "endorsing a guy that ordered his own news organization not to report on him and other Democrats."
"I mean, it's total hypocrisy," Watters said, a reference to Bloomberg News' decision that it would not investigate the candidate or any of his rivals.
Guest host Emily Compagno railed against political endorsements in general, calling them "exhausting and disappointing."
"All this does is speak volumes about those journalists and not the candidates that they are trying to endorse," she said, adding that the endorsement represented the "huge disconnect between media figures and actual real people."
"All this does is speak volumes about those journalists and not the candidates that they are trying to endorse."
Poynter Institute senior media writer Tom Jones was among those who slammed the decision by Donaldson, who retired from ABC News in 2013, to chime in.
"It's misguided to think someone who worked in journalism for more than 50 years — someone whose name is associated with tough but fair reporting — can now express a political opinion and not have it do serious damage to the credibility of those currently working in the media," Jones wrote. "Even Donaldson seemed to know that he might have been crossing a line in his endorsement of Bloomberg."
Donaldson was among the most decorated White House correspondents in history, earning the Edward R. Murrow Award, four Emmy Awards, three Peabody Awards and the DuPont Award. He became known for grilling then-President Ronald Reagan in the 1980s and defended CNN’s Jim Acosta amid a 2018 spat with President Trump.
Fox News' Brian Flood contributed to this report.