Monday, September 21, 2009

As good as Berkowitz with Obama? Berkowitz w/ U. S. Senate candidate David Hoffman on Healthcare, Gay Marriage and much more: Cable & soon streaming

U. S. Senate Candidate David Hoffman (D-Chicago): ..I am in favor of equality. And, I think that means that marriage should allow any two people who want to declare themselves together for the rest of their lives equal under the law
Four major Illinois Democrats go for gay marriage rights

Eric Zorn reports that on Friday Comptroller Dan Hynes became the third major Illinois Democrat in the last month to announce his support for gay marriage rights. Yesterday, David Hoffman, the “reform candidate,” for the U. S. Senate became the fourth major Illinois Democrat in the last month to announce his support for gay marriage rights.

Taping “Public Affairs with Jeff Berkowitz,” yesterday in a show that airs in the Chicago Metro suburbs this week [see schedule, below], former City of Chicago Inspector General and Ass’t U. S. Attorney (N.D. IL) David Hoffman said he is for same sex marriage. The Illinois Reform Commission member elaborated:

I believe we should not be discriminating in our definition of marriage or in our laws relating to marriage or other institutions that involve our personal relationships. The law should not intrude in this area. It is about equality. Religions can have their own definitions and I think we should make sure that that stays the same. But, in terms of what the law is, I am against discrimination. I am in favor of equality. And, I think that means that marriage should allow any two people who want to declare themselves together for the rest of their lives equal under the law. [And, see Zorn's update here].

The 2008 Democratic Presidential Primary candidates on Gay Marriage

During the 2008 Democratic Presidential candidate primary, Mike Gravel was the only candidate of eight to favor same sex marriage [Ed. Note: I believe that presidential candidate Bill Richardson may have eventually come out for same sex marriage, but I could find, by searching google, no corroboration of that belief]. President Obama, to this day, remains committed to a strong civil unions law that would grant a broad array of “marriage type rights,” to gays and lesbians but he has not come out for same sex marriage. Nor has he sought to push ahead with repeal of “Don’t ask, Don’t tell.” During the 2004 U. S. Senate general election campaign in Illinois, then U. S. Senate candidate Obama said [on “Public Affairs,” that he thought that the same sex marriage issue would have to get discussed and decided on a state by state basis.

Giannoulias' main opponent?

Zorn, in the “Chicago Tribune Zorn Sunday page,” of yesterday, refers to Cheryl Robinson Jackson as “Giannoulias’ main opponent.” It isn’t clear as to what the criteria are for that judgment, but on that score, here is something to keep in mind. Hoffman is not only the “newest,” major candidate in the Senate race but also the first U. S. Senate candidate to accept an invitation to appear on “Public Affairs.” Yesterday, the former U. S. Supreme Court clerk engaged in a vigorous, exchange regarding his positions on a number of important domestic, foreign and cultural public policy issues. Unlike some candidates, he is not hiding from the tough questions and playing political “Duck and Weave.”

Who is ducking and weaving?

Cheryle Robinson Jackson has committed to tape our show in two weeks and this journalist looks forward to that discussion. Alexi Giannoulias committed twice as a State Treasurer candidate to tape Public Affairs- cancelled both appearances- and never did appear. One month ago he committed to do the show and last week his deputy campaign manager Tom Bowen told this journalist that Giannoulias would not “sit for Public Affairs.” Republican Primary U. S. Senate Candidate and 9th year Cong. Mark Kirk (R-Highland Park, 10th CD) has not responded to our recent invitations to tape “Public Affairs,” and last appeared on the show circa 2003, after appearing numerous times in 1999-2000 when he was anxious for the “earned media.”

The Obama-Hoffman shared traits

By comparison, Barack Obama appeared on Public Affairs [as a State Senator and U. S. Senate candidate] five times from 2001-04. Of course, Obama went on to win the U. S. Senate seat Hoffman, Jackson, Giannoulias, Kirk and others are vying for. And, of course, he became President. I won’t go so far as to argue there is a cause and effect between Obama’s appearance on Public Affairs and his rise, eight years after his first appearance on the Program, to the Presidency. But, I will say that we can tell, among other things, something about a candidate’s true belief in transparency and reform—and his or her readiness for the office-- from that candidate’s willingness to participate in a tough, but fair, probing of her ideas and positions on the issues on a program such as Public Affairs. So far, these are character traits that Hoffman and Obama seem to share.

Who is waffling and who is not?

As candidate Obama said in 2003 on Public Affairs, Illinois can have as its U. S. Senator somebody who is for a war or somebody who is against a war. But, said Obama, what we absolutely can’t have is a U. S. Senator who waffles on the issues. And, before we can decide who is waffling, we have to see the candidates subject themselves to vigorous examination on the issues. On that, candidate Barack Obama and this journalist were in complete agreement. Over the course of the next fourteen months, voters should ask themselves which major candidates for office agree with Jeff Berkowitz and candidate Barack Obama on that manifestation of transparency? For now, you would have to put “David Hoffman,” on top of that list.
We anticipate posting our show with David Hoffman on the Public Affairs You Tube page by tomorrow afternoon.
Additional topics discussed on this week’s show with David Hoffman include funding of ACORN by the Feds, oversight of financial institutions, the proper role of government in our society, ethics reform, candidate independence, health care reform, the role of bankruptcy in our free enterprise system, the 800 billion dollar stimulus, how Hoffman would have voted in 2002 on the Iraq War Powers Resolution, how Hoffman would proceed with respect to deciding about more troops for Afghanistan, free trade, card check, Hoffman’s net worth, whether Giannoulias’ alleged mob ties is an issue in the Senate race, whether Giannoulias handling of the “Bright Start,” program is an issue in the Senate race, Cap and Trade, Public financing of campaigns, free TV time for candidates, abortion, bringing back the assault weapon ban and much, much more.
Public Affairs Chicago Metro suburban airing schedule:

The show featuring U. S. Senate Candidate David Hoffman (D-Chicago) is airing this week in the North and Northwest Chicago Metro suburbs in its regular slot:

Tuesday night (tomorrow night) at 8:30 pm on Comcast Cable Channel 19 in Buffalo Grove, Elk Grove Village, Hoffman Estates, parts of Inverness, Lincolnwood, Morton Grove, Niles, Northfield, Palatine, Rolling Meadows and Wilmette

and Tuesday night(tomorrow night) at 8:30 pm on Comcast Cable Channel 35 in Arlington Heights, Bartlett, Glenview, Golf, Des Plaines, Hanover Park, Mt. Prospect, Northbrook, Park Ridge, Prospect Heights, Schaumburg, Skokie, Streamwood and Wheeling.

and on Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 8:30 pm on Comcast Cable Channel 19 in Bannockburn, Deerfield, Ft. Sheridan, Glencoe, Highland Park, Highwood, Kenilworth, Lincolnshire, Riverwoods and Winnetka.
Chicago and Aurora:

The "Public Affairs," show featuring U. S. Senate Candidate David Hoffman (D-Chicago will also air throughout the City of Chicago this coming Monday night, Sep. 28, at 8:30 pm on Cable Ch. 21(CANTV, aka Chicago Access Network TV) and on that same night on cable in Aurora and surrounding areas at 7:30 pm on ACTV-10. The Aurora station, ACTV-10, aka Aurora Community Television, Comcast Cable Ch. 10, reaches all of Aurora, Bristol, Big Rock and parts of Oswego, Sandwich, Sugar Grove and Montgomery.
Next week's suburban edition of Public Affairs features Terry O'Brien, Candidate for President of the Cook County Board in the Democratic Primary and President for the last 13 years of the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District.