Smart Talk

Smart Talk is a daily, live, interactive program featuring conversations with newsmakers and experts in a variety of fields and exploring a wide range of issues and ideas, including the economy, politics, health care, education, culture, and the environment.  Smart Talk airs live every week day at 9 a.m. on WITF’s 89.5 and 93.3.

Listen to Smart Talk live online from 9-10 a.m. weekdays and at 7 p.m. (Repeat of 9 a.m. program)

Host: Scott LaMar

Smart Talk: An unprecedented presidential race

Written by Scott LaMar, Smart Talk Host/Executive Producer | Sep 21, 2015 9:50 AM
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Photo by Scott LaMar/WITF

What to look for on Smart Talk Monday, September 21, 2015:

The 2016 presidential campaigns won't end until voters cast their ballots 14 months from now.

But yet, the campaigns are dominating the news cycles today.  Voters who traditionally wouldn't pay much attention until just before their state's primary or Labor Day before the general election are engaged.  Billionaire businessman and reality TV show star Donald Trump is leading the polls on the Republican side.  Support for neurosurgeon Ben Carson and former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina is growing.  All three are considered outsiders to Washington.  Presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton is facing an unexpected challenge from Socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont.  Speculation is that the Democratic race could scramble even more if Vice President Joe Biden declares his candidacy.

It's safe to say that no presidential campaign has gotten this much attention this early or had so many candidates running -- 14 Republicans and four Democrats.

On Monday's Smart Talk, we'll focus on what has made this campaign so unusual, what's resonating with voters, and why outsiders are doing so well in the polls.

Appearing on the program are Dr. Fletcher McClellan, Dean of Faculty and Professor of Political Science at Elizabethtown College and Dr. Christopher Borick, Director of the Institute of Public Opinion and Associate Professor of Political Science at Muhlenburg College.

WITF's Election 2015 coverage is supported by The Harrisburg Office of the Law Firm of Saul Ewing L-L-P.

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Dr. Christopher Borick & Dr. Fletcher McClellan

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  • Radio Smart Talk img 2015-09-21 10:09

    Thomas emails:

    Our 2 party system has created a greater partisan divide which begins to disenfranchise the moderate free thinking voter, then as we have seen in recent history the greater divide has elected politicians that cannot work with politicians of the opposite party. The overreach of mother government and recent political worthlessness has further repelled voters to the point where the only ones left to be involved in the American political process are fanatics. Now we will see who the fanatical electorate will put in power.

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2015-09-21 10:10

    Manuel in Carlisle emails:

    My wife and I used to be registered as Democrat and Republican respectively. I stress USED TO. In the past 6 months, we both switched our registration to Libertarian. Why? Because we are both ashamed and dismayed by the behavior, attitudes and actions by the parties we used to be part of, and the divisiveness BOTH parties have been encouraging in our nation. Frankly, if a new Ross Perot were to arise, we probably would join in. We need an outsider movement, and for both major parties to cease and desist with the divisiveness.

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2015-09-21 10:10

    Victor emails:

    Oh, puleeze! The election is still more than a year away. So much and too much attention is being paid to polls, etc. this early in the election cycle. Poll can and will change as time goes along. This constant hand-wringing speculation is nothing more than much ado about nothing.

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2015-09-21 10:12

    Victor emails:

    Oh, puleeze! The election is still more than a year away. So much and too much attention is being paid to polls, etc. this early in the election cycle. Poll can and will change as time goes along. This constant hand-wringing speculation is nothing more than much ado about nothing.

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2015-09-21 10:12

    Eugene emails:

    I’m generally glad you’ve created this public affairs program, and that you offer many informative perspectives on important issues.

    I’m concerned that today’s presentation is so much like the rest of our US media coverage of the election question, in that most of your discussion is about the “horse race” and the performance strategies the candidates are employing. What about their likely policies, if elected ?

    I haven’t heard much at all from your political affairs experts about what these various candidates have said, or what their experiences and performance to date, seem to indicate they would do as president.

    Who are the candidates’ advisors and what are the candidates’ likely policies that we would have to live with if any of them were to be elected ?

    What are their track records while in office, in academia, or in businesses, and what would these records point to as likely directions for the way they would set policies for the nation ?

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2015-09-21 10:13

    Victor emails:

    Oh, puleeze! The election is still more than a year away. So much and too much attention is being paid to polls, etc. this early in the election cycle. Poll can and will change as time goes along. This constant hand-wringing speculation is nothing more than much ado about nothing.