Monday, December 12, 2005

Webcasts and Cablecasts on Public Affairs

The newest addition to the Public Affairs Cinema [See here] is our show with 8th CD candidate David McSweeney [R- Barrington], taped yesterday, so couldn’t be fresher. [To watch or listen, simply go the Public Affairs Cinema home page, and click on your choice]. I punched at David McSweeney as hard as I could, and he gave as good as he took.

I even cited statements from Cong. Jan Schakowsky as my authority for why the recent energy bill wouldn’t expand the number of refineries in the U. S. How is that for “fair and balanced.” McSweeney wasn’t overwhelmed but I would hope Jan and other Democrats would take notice of that level of balance.

The thing you have to like about McSweeney is the way he never shies away from challenging questions. Yesterday was McSweeney’s fourth appearance on Public Affairs this year, with his first in January, 2005, and others in May and August. When I call McSweeney asking him to appear, he always finds a way to schedule our show.

Republicans Kathy Salvi and Rep. Bob Churchill both entered the 8th CD Republican Primary a little later than Dave, but neither has been shy about coming on the show. Each has been there once, and Churchill is already scheduled to return. Republican Teresa Bartels essentially entered the 8th CD Primary in the Spring, scheduled three appearances, canceled three and has met our subsequent requests either with a NO, or silence.

I don’t endorse candidates, but I do endorse the notion that candidates and officeholders ought to be willing to subject themselves to tough questioning on the issues. Some are, some apparently not so much. While candidates are of course “Free to choose,” television producers and hosts are “Free to Disclose.”

I have not yet gotten to Ken Arnold and Aaron Lincoln, two likely candidates in the 8th CD Republican Primary with a little less in the way of resources and political organization, but I will try to work them into the “Public Affairs,” line up, as well.

The first term incumbent Congresswoman in the 8th CD, Melissa Bean [D- Barrington] is scheduled to tape our show in the middle of January and she also appeared on the show in the Fall, 2004 campaign. If I can get a congresswoman to appear on Pubic Affairs once a year, as Cong. Bean is doing, I am a very happy camper, as are our viewers.

The Public Affairs Cinema offers ten shows, each running about thirty minutes and one [Eisendrath], about five minutes. Six Republicans and five Democrats. That’s about as balanced as I can make it. Represented among the eleven shows are Gubernatorial candidate guests and guests holding office or running in the 6th, 7th , 8th, and 9th CDs, and for Cook County Board President.

For those who prefer cable TV to their computer, State Rep. and 8th CD Republican Primary candidate Bob Churchill is appearing on Public Affairs this evening at 8:30 pm on Cable Ch. 21 [CANTV] throughout the City of Chicago. [The show with Churchill is also available at the Public Affairs Cinema].

For national, state and local public policy and politics, it’s Public Affairs and the Public Affairs Cinema.
Jeff Berkowitz, Host and Producer of Public Affairs and an Executive Recruiter doing Legal Search, can be reached at