Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Election Night Coverage on Bay Area Radio; KCBS and NewsTalk 910 Deliver; Sandalow/Matier and Sovern Highlight; Rothmann/Koontz on KKSF; Wednesday AM Darts

Election Coverage Quick darts:

*KCBS gets high marks for overall excellence. Excellent reporting by standout rep, Doug Sovern. Always quick, reliable and concise with shotgun delivery.

Marc Sandalow is the finest political analyst in the Bay Area. His morning reports and analysis with Stan Bunger and Susan Leigh Taylor was, as usual, spot on and revealing.

Sandalow is good because he talks like a regular guy. There's no showmanship and insincerity. He gives honest takes and is quite accurate. On the narrow defeat of the proposed cigarette tax, he pointed out that in the more progressive cities like SF and LA, the proposition did well, but faltered in the small towns like Bakersfield, the Central Coast, etc, "where more people tend to smoke." Good point.

* Phil Matier's morning wrap was also very good. Complete analysis of the primary. A definitive take on the paltry turnout and what might portend for the general in November. In three minutes, Matier can dish out the nuggets and make it interesting. And good questions by Bunger and Taylor.

Overall, KCBS was far and away the best source for election night coverage on radio.

*Newstalk 910, (KKSF-AM)

As I indicated in a previous post, it was a good night for the Bay Area's new talk station. Especially pleasing, John Rothmann and Sebastian Koontz's dialogue and analysis. Just downright interesting, enlightening and entertaining.

In addition, Rothmann's callers, (he took limited calls) were chock full of insight, unusual candor and unexpected delight. A caller from Berkeley, for example, had a great take on what might be Obama's swan song in November. It came out of nowhere, but the caller provided some interesting points.

Again, it was simple radio. It wasn't especially splashy or full of high line actuality. But that's what made it so good. You don't need a lot of noise to be entertaining. The listeners who hear the show, some of them at least, appreciate good content. Honest and enlightening dialogue by people who know what the hell they're talking about--that's the total package.

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  1. I do not understand why management would not give the 7-10pm slot to Rothman. We need a local voice in that time slot. KSCO goes to Alex Jones and 910 am goes to Combs at 7pm. Fans of Combs and Jones can find their shows online easily enough. I bet Rothman could at least equal if not supersede Combs' ratings. What a delight to hear John for 3 hrs last night

  2. Once again Wolf Blitzer made himself look stupid when he went on the air and declared that Wis Gov Scott Walker won by a thin margin.
    False Wolf. Gov Walker won by a 7 percentage points.
    In an election that is a resounding victory.
    A mandate. Well Wolf speak up.

    1. A 7 point win, one-and-half years into one's term - during a recall - is a comfortable margin of victory . It is certainly not "thin" as some reporters suggest, but it is hardly a "mandate" as you suggest. It's not a precise term but in political speak, a "landslide" is usually considered 60 percent of the vote or better. One who wins in a landslide can usually claim a mandate. Again, Walker's win is significant, but it is not a mandate for anything.

    2. not to mention that Walker's campaign spent 10 times what the Dems could.. thanks to Citizen's United. The Koch's and Karl Roves of the world own our democracy now.

  3. Did you bother even tuning over to KQED, which produced the statewide "California Report" election coverage for a few hours? I know it's just public radio, but...

  4. Sandalow is great! He was on TV also, wasn't he...? Seems to me I first became aware of his regular spots on some TV news channel, but I can't recall which one. Is he still doing any of that, or is it only on KCBS radio that I would hear him now? First I found his little stuttery, lispy delivery a bit distracting - Like: How did he get in to broadcasting? - But then I started listening to what he was actually saying, and he's always spot on and (although I've been accused of being quite liberal)to me, at least, he is very good at pointing out both sides of an issue. Love him on KCBS. Does that mean he'll be fired soon, or am I being too cynical?

  5. There are reporters who cover political stories, and politics junkies who do reporting. Of the latter, Doug Sovern is getting to be a local treasure. And Mark Sandalow eminently valuable. Phil Matier's acerbic declamations on local issues are always fun. But these types are getting ever more rare. I'll include Dave Bryan of the KCBS-TV/KCAL duopoly in Los Angeles--informative and impartial, specializing in Sacramento machinations. And who spent much of the eighties at KPIX.

  6. Loved hearing John Rothmann's show. One never ceases to learn when he's on the air!

  7. Yes, Rothman instead of Combs, please!!