From: Kim Alexander
Date: October 6, 1998
Subject: PBS' 30-Second Candidate Documentary

Hi Folks,

So sorry for the email deluge but this is a busy time here at CVF....I wanted to alert you to a new PBS television documentary, called the 30-Second Candidate, which begins airing on PBS stations nationwide this evening. The hour-long documentary examines the state of modern-day campaign advertising, and features an interview with yours truly about the growing influence of the Internet in political campaigns.

The show airs tonight (Oct. 6th) on KVIE in Sacramento at 11 p.m. It may be showing at a different time on your local PBS station this evening, or it might air next week on October 13 - check your local listings.

More information about the program is featured below.

-- Kim Alexander, President
California Voter Foundation


Tuesday, October 6, 10 p.m. ET on PBS (check local listings)

It's the day before the first congressional election of 1998, and California media consultant Jackie Breedlove has her work cut out for her. She's never had a client lose an election, but now she's facing more than just an opposing candidate. Outside groups are flooding the airwaves, pushing their own agendas and trying to alter the outcome of this special election.

How Breedlove tries to outflank this controversial new trend is one of several scenes captured in THE 30-SECOND CANDIDATE, a new one-hour documentary adventure into the world of political advertising. The program airs on PBS Tuesday, October 6, 1998, at 10:00 p.m. ET (check local listings).

From California to south Georgia to small-town elections in the Midwest, the 30-second TV spot now dominates American politics. The 30-SECOND CANDIDATE explores the evolution of this political art form, its growth and some possible options for reform.

THE 30-SECOND CANDIDATE traces the history of the political TV ad, from its beginning during the 1952 presidential campaign of Dwight D. Eisenhower through the last presidential campaign of 1996. Commentators include Robert Squier, who put together President Clinton's advertising campaign in 1996, and Alex Castellanos, who played the same role for Republican challenger Bob Dole. Kathleen Hall Jamieson, Dean of the Annenberg School for Communications at the University of Pennsylvania, and Jeff Greenfield of CNN add their observations and help dissect ad techniques.

The program also follows all three candidates in California's recent Democratic primary for governor, in which one contender, Al Checchi, spent $40 million -- and lost. The documentary captures the closing days of that campaign and assesses what happened and why.

THE 30-SECOND CANDIDATE also takes viewers inside congressional races in Minnesota and southern Georgia to see how a media campaign unfolds, from strategy sessions to editing commercials. The documentary provides an unusual "fly-on-the-wall" perspective on a process few people get to see.