What are they waiting for? TV pundits, talk show hosts, talking heads ignore climate change

January 11, 2008 at 5:17 am | Posted in 2008, America, Climate change, Democrats, Election, Global warming, Interviews, LCV, Media, Political reporters, Politics, Primaries, Republicans, Sunday morning shows, Talk show hosts, Television, TV, US | Leave a comment
What are they waiting for?  LCV reports top reporters are ignoring top issue

The League of Conservation Voters (LCV) are watching TV so we don’t have to ;-) They claim:

Top reporters are ignoring the top issue

and, acting as a media watchdog and pressure group to urge the media to make global warming a political priority, have paid for and prepared a study that has:

“monitored and analyzed transcripts and footage from all major debates and interviews in 2007 involving presidential candidates and the following political reporters. Of the thousands of questions asked, see how many times they’ve said the words global warming.”

No surprises there.  (Download a PDF by clicking on the image above, if you’d like a piece of paper to pin on your dart noticeboard.)

These political talk shows are not available in the UK (for good reason), and, being invariably busy at church on Sundays in the US, I only ever caught snippets served up by TiVo later. Nevertheless, these shows perhaps provide a barometer of what you are meant to be talking about Stateside, if you have nothing better to do than listen to what pundits are saying about what politicians said … about UFOs and baseball, for instance … and then are able to find someone who will listen to you repeating it! Climate change doesn’t get a look in. (Anyway, it has to be called ‘global warming’ in America, for reasons I will not go into now.)

These shows appear to be influential. (But are they?)

While global warming heats up on the campaign trail, Sunday hosts continue to ignore the issue
Gibson sparked a critical discussion on how candidates will tackle the enormous challenge
LCV urges TV pundits to get on board
That last one is reproduced in full here:

01/04/08
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: David Sandretti, (202) 785-8683 or david_sandretti@lcv.org

Voters and Candidates Prove Energy and Global Warming Issues Matter

LCV Urges TV Pundits to Get On Board

WASHINGTON, DC - League of Conservation Voters President Gene Karpinski issued the following statement urging television talk show hosts to question presidential candidates on global warming:

“In a week when oil prices hit $100 per barrel and 15 states sued the EPA over a global warming decision, voters are demanding action on climate change and energy issues. And the top presidential candidates are listening. All three Democrats and the leading Republican in the Iowa Caucuses have advocated capping greenhouse gas emissions — a clear repudiation of the Bush administration’s position on global warming.

“Now it is on to New Hampshire, and it is time for the television media to get on board. LCV’s running tally at www.whataretheywaitingfor.com shows that in 140 interviews and debates so far, TV’s top five political reporters have asked 2,484 questions of the presidential candidates, but have mentioned global warming only three times and asked only 24 questions related to the issue.

“At a time when the talk show hosts are spending valuable airtime probing the candidates’ positions on UFOs and baseball, ignoring the greatest challenge of our time –global climate change — is simply unacceptable.

“This weekend, as the candidates debate and appear on the Sunday talk shows ahead of next week’s New Hampshire primaries, we urge the television media to catch up on this critical issue.

“Earlier this year, more than 150 New Hampshire town halls voted for resolutions urging the presidential candidates to address global warming. Voters in Iowa and New Hampshire and around the country are speaking clearly. And they are demanding answers. It’s time for the media to ask the questions.”

###

The nonprofit League of Conservation Voters (LCV) is the independent political voice for the environment. To secure the environmental future of our planet, LCV’s mission is to advocate for sound environmental policies and to elect pro-environmental candidates who will adopt and implement such policies. For more information, please visit us on the web at www.lcv.org

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