Bret Baier really knows the expression: “Never a dull moment.” As the anchor of The Fox News Channel's Special Report, he’s seriously on top of the news. Good thing he knows what he’s doing. Baier took over the helm in 2009 and marked his five year anniversary Monday. Amazing that the still boyish looking father of two, 43, has time for much in his off hours, but he managed to write Special Heart, detailing his 6-year-old son Paul’s battle with a rare heart condition. The book is due out this summer; all proceeds go to pediatric cardiac research. We chatted with the Washington, D.C., based newsman:
What’s a typical workday like for you?
I usually have a morning workout and spend time with my boys [younger son Daniel is 3]. I get my daily feeds, answer some emails and connect with the White House, the Pentagon, Justice Department. A typical day is atypical. Very dynamic. The show can change many times before it actually goes on air. If I’m lucky I’m home before my oldest son conks out.
Were you always a news junkie?
I always knew I wanted to do this. I worked on my school paper and did the small market thing. When I started at Fox News in 1998 I ran the Atlanta bureau in my apartment with just a fax machine and eventually became Chief White House Correspondent. When I first took over for my mentor Brit Hume five years ago, it was stressful. He was an institution. I thought a lot of people were going to say, ‘How’s this young guy going to work out?’ We built on Brit’s foundation.
With all the craziness goes on every day, are you ever shocked anymore?
Well, I tell you when I heard the Duck Dynasty stuff in the morning meeting recently, I had to shake my head. It’s funny how pop culture can become a news event.
Was writing the book cathartic? How is your son doing?
He was born with a clean bill of health. When we were getting ready to leave the hospital, a nurse noticed he was starting to look pale. They thought it might be a bacterial infection, but he was diagnosed with five congenital heart defects. He had three open heart surgeries and seven angioplasties. The book is kind of a labor of love, showing how my wife [ Amy] and I got through it. Hopefully it can help other parents. Paul is doing awesome now. He can do whatever he wants to do. I have to run both boys like dogs to get them tired!