Congressional Black Caucus says Sunday shows need more diversity


Over the years Media Matters has released several detailed reports documenting the lack of ideological, racial and gender diversity within the media in general and on the all-important Sunday morning network political talk shows more specifically.

Well, this morning The Hill reports that the Congressional Black Caucus is calling for increased diversity on the Sunday shows:

"I'm not pleased at all with the diversity issue as it relates to talk shows," CBC Chairwoman Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) said in an interview with The Hill. "We have, what, 17 subcommittee chairs and four full-committee chairmen? These members are brilliant; they know their stuff. They're powerful and they should be part of the Sunday morning talk shows."

Rep. G.K. Butterfield (D-N.C.), secretary of the CBC, calls himself a "fan" of the Sunday shows, but said he'd like to see change.

"The morning talk shows need to increase the number of African-Americans," Butterfield said. "Not only for diversity, but it would also be good for the ratings."

The comments come three years after a study found a striking lack of black participants on the shows. The original study was completed before Democrats took over Congress in the 2006 elections, which put many more black and Hispanic lawmakers into positions of power.

But some legislators say that hasn't been reflected on the shows.

In the past, the networks have contended that their guest line-ups reflect those in power despite the fact that little changed in 2007 after Democrats took control of Congress. By their own standard one would expect things to look a little different on Sunday mornings these days.


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