Tag Archive: Mike Schneider

Past NAACP NJ Chief on Gov. Christie: “A pattern of breaking the law when it comes to civil rights”

A couple of days ago when I posted this – Chris Christie: The guy who lives HERE doesn’t think NJ needs affordable housing – about how our private-jetting, luxury hotel-loving, fabulous mansion-living governor doesn’t see the need for affordable housing in his state, Darnell Hardwick of NAACP New Jersey reminded me of this, two years ago:

Here is NAACP NJ’s former chief James E. Harris, charging Gov. Christie with a pattern of breaking the law when it comes to civil rights. This is dead-on:

“He’s breaking the law because he has a different idea of what government should be. [Christie] wants to disengage government at the local level and let local people have control. In a state like New Jersey that’s so racially segregated, if you leave the choice to local communities, they won’t change. We’re the most racially segregated state in the United States of America … We have school systems based on housing patterns where students go to school without having much interaction with any of the students other than their own race. So the governor wants to placate and play to the governor’s side which is leave us alone and we’ll be fine. Well, civil rights says you can’t leave people alone because things will never change.”

On the jump page, watch Harris on NJToday with Mike Schneider (6/10/13):

TONIGHT: CD12 Civil Rights & Liberties Debate – All 5 Candidates, Both Parties

New Jersey’s 12th congressional district is am

ong the best educated in the country (census). And it has been repped for 15 years by one of the most progressive members of Congress in the country (Holt: Highest Progressive Punch score in NJ’s House delegation). Part of Holt’s top designation is a near perfect ‘score’ in Human Rights & Civil Liberties, and other issues of social justice.

President of the NJ Second Amendment Society Makes the Case for Gun Safety Legislation

On the nightly NJTV news program today, host Mike Schneider interviewed the President of the New Jersey Second Amendment Society, Frank Fiamingo, about some of the gun safety legislation that is pending in the legislature. In the interview, Fiamingo inadvertently made the case for stricter legislation.

Here’s what Fiamingo said:

“It is ironic to me that we can send young men to Iraq, you know, in the military, and give that put weapons in their hands but we don’t feel that they’re qualified to, you know, to purchase them and possess them in the United States.”

So Fiamingo is using the military as a model for how guns should be used.

People who join the military and handle weapons are subject to rudimentary background checks. Is Fiamingo advocating for background checks for civilian gun owners?

Before a soldier is allowed to fire a weapon, he or she receives hours of supervised training. Is Fiamingo advocating for mandatory training for civilian gun owners?

In the military, guns and ammunition are kept under lock and key with strict security when they are not being used in combat or in training. Is Fiamingo advocating for mandatory safes and locks for civilian gun owners?

Common sense gun safety is a hallmark of the way the military handles weapons. We should demand no less of civilian gun owners.

NJTV Deceives its Viewers

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Although it has not been an issue in this year’s election, let’s not forget that Chris Christie destroyed a cherished State asset when he nuked the NJN television network. It was eventually replaced by NJTV on whose Board are several Christie cronies.

If you’re not familiar with the 6PM newscast, it opens with host Mike Schneider reciting the headlines, followed by an interminably long roll of various photos of New Jersey.

Tonight’s opening headlines went like this: (emphasis and annotations mine)

“The final week of the governor’s race. The big battle over raising the minimum wage. The Obama administration apologizing for [dramatic pause] Obamacare

Mike Schneider is a smart reporter. He should know that the Obama administration did apologize – but not for Obamacare. There’s no need to apologize for a program that provides health insurance at lower cost an greater availability to millions of Americans.

The Obama administration did apologize for a web snafu. That’s all. It’s unfortunate that the mainstream media is focusing on this instead of the ubiquity of critical health care for millions of previously uninsured or underinsured.

Mike Schneider owes the people of New Jersey an apology for this misleading headline.

ICYMI: Senate Democratic Primary Debate

Here is NJTV’s broadcast of tonight’s NJ Democratic Senate Primary debate, moderated by the Mike Schneider, anchor and managing editor of NJTV’s NJ Today, with contributions from Al Doblin, editorial page editor at The Record. It was well-moderated by Schneider, but remarkably poorly-lit at Montclair State University. If you’re reading this just after I posted it, you can also watch the rebroadcast, starting now at 11pm on NJTV’s air.

You’ll have at least one more chance to see the four Democrats together; this Thursday August 8th at 7pm to be broadcast on WBGO 88.3 FM and on News 12 New Jersey. The candidates have just a week more to make their case to you. Primary e-day is next Tuesday, August 13.  

How’s NJTV Doing?

NJTV, the only state-wide television network, rose out of the ashes of the highly-acclaimed state-funded New Jersey Network (NJN) in mid-2010. As a news junkie and amateur pundit, I’ve been a loyal watcher of NJTV’s 6 PM newscast.

Despite the fact that the level of funding for state-wide news has gone down significantly since the demise of NJN, I’m happy that the quality of the newscasts is getting better, albeit with much more room for improvement. Anchor Mike Schneider is an excellent interviewer and he usually presents a neutral tone on even the most contentious issues in Trenton. The extended interviews with New Jersey’s movers and shakers are something that no other outlet (except Blue Jersey) currently provides across the state. The network has invested in state-of-the-art equipment that enables it to report from remote sites over conventional telephone circuits, giving reporters the opportunity to go where the news happens. The major challenge that NJTV News faces is a small staff of reporters and technical people. With all that’s happening in the state, they can’t cover as much breaking news as they should.

Of course, the nightly newscast has to compete with other news outlets like the New York and Philadelphia commercial stations, the Internet, radio, and dead-tree newspapers. A recent poll conducted by Monmouth University reported that only 25% of the New Jerseyans they questioned had watched NJTV News in 2012, down from a high of 59% who had watched its predecessor, NJN, in 1999. But when Monmouth pollster Patrick Murray asked about the quality of the newscasts, the story was a bit different. “While there has been a significant drop in the visibility and brand identity of New Jersey’s public television outlet since the transfer to NJTV, the net impact on perceived quality has been negligible for most residents”, reported Murray.

The quality and quantity of the news reported on NJTV run rings around that of the commercial stations. Recently, researchers from Seton Hall University spent five weeks watching all of the local newscasts on NJTV and the highest-rated New York and Philadelphia commercial stations, WNBC and WPVI respectively. While NJTV devotes 81% of its 30-minute time slot to straight news, WPVI devotes only 50% and WNBC devotes a mere 42%. Also, 89% of the stories on NJTV were devoted to New Jersey news, while the numbers for WPVI and WNBC were 24% and 17%. The Seton Hall team also noted that the stories on the commercial stations emphasized crime, while NJTV’s coverage was more toward politics and government.

The reports from these two institutions are chock full of more statistics, but the bottom line is that despite Governor Christie’s evisceration of a New Jersey institution 18 months ago, and despite the fact that one of the Governor’s cheerleaders, Steve Adubato, is a principal in the new organization, the news division is improving. And while the ownership of the station is out of the state’s hands, the state still holds the broadcast licenses. So let’s keep NJTV’s feet to the fire – give credit when deserved, and speak out loudly and forcefully when we think it’s falling behind its mission to serve the citizens of New Jersey.

Below the fold: Nostalgia. The sign-off of NJN with Jim Hooker and Michael Aron

CD10: Donald Payne Jr. thinks marriage equality needs “more study”

In an interview to be broadcast tonight, Donald Payne Jr., son of the late congressman and candidate for the CD10 Democratic nomination makes a pretty vanilla, non-statement statement when host Mike Schneider asks him about President Obama’s landmark endorsement of marriage equality yesterday.

Payne was interviewed for NJToday, which you can see at 6, 7:30 and 11pm tonight on NJTV. Here’s what Schneider says about Payne’s answer:

Payne said he is a strong supporter of Obama, but he wasn’t prepared to say he supports same-sex marriage, as Obama announced Wednesday. “We’re looking at it,” Payne said. “As I said I’ve been a supporter of equal rights for all people and I don’t see where that would be much of a problem moving forward.”

In a tweet today, Schneider said Payne thinks the issue requires “more study.”

More study? I hope his position changes, but I’d say for right now we wouldn’t be able to count on him as a voice in Congress for marriage equality.  

CD9: NJTV Interview with Steve Rothman

Rep. Steve Rothman, locked with Bill Pascrell into what has so far been a painful Democratic primary to watch in CD9, sat for an interview with Mike Schneider, host of NJ Today, NJTV’s nightly public affairs show airing last night.

Schneider gets right into the question the Pascrell campaign has hammered Rothman for weeks, why he chose to run in the CD9 instead of CD5 which is where congressional redistricting placed his Fairlawn home (now up for sale, he’s moved back to Englewood in the 9th, where he used to be mayor). Schneider also asks Rothman for a rundown of the votes and issues that differentiate his record from Pascrell’s. Rothman says progressive Democrats are going to determine who wins the Democratic primary. And to Schneider’s question about reports Rothman sent letters to Republican Orthodox rabbis asking them to register to vote for him in the Democratic primary, Rothman said the letters were paid for by the campaign, but the idea generated amongst the rabbis themselves. But I don’t want to talk/write through it when you can be watching.

NJ Today:

Watch Steve Rothman Defends Decision to Run in Ninth District on PBS.  See more from WNJT.