Thursday, November 13, 2008

Better than Meet the Press: Terry Martin interviews Jeff Berkowitz on the Blagojevich Senate appointment to replace Obama. Cable and Streaming

Terry Martin, Executive Director of the Illinois Channel, interviews Jeff Berkowitz, Contributing Correspondent of the Illinois Channel, about possible appointments by Gov. Blagojevich to fill President-elect Obama's U. S. Senate seat. President-elect Obama announced today that he will resign his senate seat this weekend. The Martin interview with Berkowitz was taped on November 4, 2008 and contains a discussion of the implicit Obama-Blagojevitch interactions and tensions involved in the Senate nomination by the Governor, as well as an assessment of a number of the potential candidates to fill the spot.

The show is airing this week throughout the State of Illinois and it will continue to do so thru Sunday on the Illinois Channel. You can watch it on the web through Sunday on the Illinois Channel website by clicking the picture of Jeff Berkowitz and also you can watch the show on the Illinois Channel's cable outlets (See, below, for the Illinois Channel airing schedule). A partial transcript of the show is included, below.
Terry Martin [Executive Director, Illinois Channel]: …As we tape this just after the [Nov. 4] election, let’s run through some of the candidates who are currently being rumored as far as who might be replacing Senator Obama in the U. S. Senate. Give us one of the names that might be named by the Governor.

Jeff Berkowitz [Contributing Correspondent, Illinois Channel]: …Before we go through the list, let’s look at what [Gov. Blagojevich] is trying to do here. Rod Blagojevich wants to narrow the field [of Democratic opponents to his re-nomination]. He’s looking to 2010. There are lots of people who could be running against him, some of them pretty credible. He also has this problem with a likely, some would say likely and some would say potential, indictment from the U. S. Attorney’s office in the Northern District of Illinois, Patrick Fitzgerald. So, [Gov. Blagojevich] would like to do something that might diminish that possibility that he gets indicted by Patrick Fitzgerald. Barack Obama, on the other hand, has a lot to say about whether Patrick Fitzgerald stays on as U. S. Attorney. And, Barack Obama would like to have somebody …to replace him as Senator, of stature. Somebody who would help with the legislative program. Somebody who would make Illinois proud. So, that’s what’s going on here. As we talk about the possible replacements [of Senator Obama], I think you have to look at it in that context. Now, looking at people who just come to mind…
Terry Martin: …what about the argument that some are making that [this Obama U. S. Senate] seat ought to be held again by an African-American, and if so, who would be considered in that light?

Jeff Berkowitz: Well, let me just mention one other important name…somebody who is not African-American but who is important is Jan Schakowsky, so before we turn to those [African-Americans], let’s turn to Jan. She has been a big time supporter of—

Terry Martin: Congresswoman from the north side of Chicago?

Jeff Berkowitz: Right, and into the suburbs, into Evanston and so forth. And, [Jan] has been [in the Congress] a decade. She is very close to Speaker Nancy Pelosi, was once thought to be quite liberal and on the outs, strongly anti-war…now as the country perhaps has shifted and certainly the leadership in Congress has shifted to the left, Jan Schakowsky is a power and she has always been there with Rod Blagojevich, perhaps going back to
Jeff Berkowitz: Emil Jones, of course, is

Terry Martin: a strong supporter of Rod Blagojevich and a mentor of President-Elect Obama-

Jeff Berkowitz: for a quarter of a century, going way back, a quarter of a century, a close friend, close mentor, certainly this is someone who Barack would feel, if he could, he would put Emil Jones there as a capstone for his career, but then again, he probably is of an age [such that] he is not going to want to stay there, so you lose that incumbency edge…doesn’t look like the way to go, but you have to mention those two possibilities [as caretaker appointments]…Donne Trotter is a state senator who is very close with Emil Jones, so Emil Jones might go to Barack Obama and say, “I’d like to see Donne Trotter [as a U. S. Senator]. Barack Obama would like to repay the favor of a quarter of century of [Jones] being a mentor, but again…people are going to say, “Who is this guy,” [State Senator Trotter] is not somebody who … sounds like he has the qualities of a Barack Obama when he first ran and became a U. S. Senator.

Terry Martin: Although that is a hard standard to duplicate again. But, certainly, Donne Trotter is an articulate individual, knows economic issues and can articulate tax policies and those kinds of things.

Jeff Berkowitz: [Sen. Trotter] is a possibility. Cheryle Jackson, the head of the Chicago Urban League, has been getting a lot of play lately and had been …close with Rod Blagojevitch, before that, in the press area so… she’s got some stature. Again…I don’t think she is going to be the pick. She is an African-American. Another African-American, John Rogers, President of …Ariel Capital Management, a money fund organization, has been a big time contributor and raising money for Barack over time, part of the burgeoning… upper class of African-American professionals in Chicago and in the Illinois area. A possibility, but no. I think we’re getting close, though, as you can sense, to who I think might be the one or two people who—

Terry Martin: So, your favorite, here, huh?

Jeff Berkowitz: Not my—

Terry Martin: Your favorite as far as who you think is going to be selected.

Jeff Berkowitz: …I’d say the odds on favorite, but it’s very close, [to be
appointed by Gov. Blagojevich to the U. S. Senate] is …
Jeff Berkowitz, interviewed by Terry Martin on November 4, 2008.
The Illinois Channel cable outlets air a two hour, weekly block of programming on cable. The show with Berkowitz and Martin is the third of six segments airing on the Illinois Channel this week, and will air starting about ten minutes into the block of programming and continue for about twenty additional minutes into that two hour block of programming. Please click on Distribution at the Illinois Channel website or click here to find the cable airing days, time at which the two hour block of programming begins and the channel for your location.
Some examples of the scheduled times and channels for the show with Berkowitz and Martin on the Illinois Channel this week of November 10, 2008 are given below:

Bloomington, Insight Cable Ch. 20, Saturday, 11:10 am; Sunday, 7:10 pm

Normal, Insight Cable. Ch. 20, 11:10 am; Sunday, 7:10 pm

Rockford, Comcast Cable Ch. 17, Thursday, 6:10 pm

Galesburg, Cable Ch. 22, Thursday-Sunday, 9:10 am, 2:10 pm. 8:40 pm

Bolingbrook Community TV, Cable Ch. 6, Friday, 6:10 pm

Chicago CANTV, Cable Ch. 21, Saturday, 9:10 am

Chicago CANTV, Cable Ch. 19, Sunday, 8:40 am (Better than Fox News Chicago)

DeKalb, Cable Ch. 14, Wed., 9:10 pm, Friday, 7:10 pm and Saturday, 6:10 am

Evanston, Cable Ch. 16, Sat., 12:10 pn,

Lake Forest and Lake Bluff, Cable Ch. 17, Wed. - Fri.,9:40 pm

Naperville, Wide Open West Cable Ch. 6, Saturday, 12:10 pm

Naperville, Comcast Cable Ch. 10, Wed., Th., 5:10 pm: Saturday, 12:10 pm

Palatine, Comcast ch. 6, Wed., 6:10 pm, Sat., 9:10 am, Sun.,6:10 pm (Better than 60 Minutes)

Romeoville, Comcast Cable Ch. 6, Wed., Th., Fri., Sat., Sunday; 5:10 pm (Better than Special Report)

Springfield, Municipal Ch. 18, Sat. and Sun., 10:10 am

Springfield, Insight Cable Ch. 22, Fri., Sat., and Sun., 10:10pm

Springfield, Insight Cable Ch. 18, Sat., Sun., 5:10 am

Westmont, Comcast Cable Ch. 16, Wed., Friday, 6:10 am, 9:10 am, 12:10 pm, 3:10pm, 6:10 pm, 9:10 pm.

Winnetka, Comcast Cable Ch. 18, Tu., Th., 10:10 am and 10:10 pm

To find the days, time and channel for which the two hour block of Illinois Channel programming begins in your village or municipality, please click on Distribution at the Illinois Channel website or click here to find the cable airing days, time at which the two hour block of programming begins and the channel for your location. The show with Berkowitz and Martin starts ten minutes into the two hour block of programming.