Tag Archives: Bill Clinton

An Event that Altered the Dynamics between Politicians and the Press

(co-authored with Anne W. Lee)

Twenty years ago on June 3, 1992, during his first campaign for the presidency, Bill Clinton joined the house band on the “Arsenio Hall Show” and played a rousing version of “Heartbreak Hotel” on the saxophone.

Had Clinton’s appearance taken place today, it would not have made the impact it did two decades ago. In 2012, we have grown accustomed to seeing political candidates and elected officials conversing with Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert, joking with the cast of “Saturday Night Live” and slow-jamming the news with Jimmy Fallon.

But in 1992, candidates who wanted to be taken seriously went on “Meet the Press,” “Face the Nation” and “Nightline.” They didn’t go on Arsenio Hall, and they certainly didn’t don sun glasses and rock out Elvis tunes with the band. Continue reading

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We Learned the Wrong Lesson from the JFK-Nixon Debates

With summer officially behind us, the fall campaign season is shifting into high gear. Over the next few weeks, in addition to the usual flurry of political ads, rallies and newspaper stories, we also will have an opportunity to see candidates square off against their opponents in campaign debates.

But how much do debates really tell us about how well a candidate will perform in office? Continue reading