Your daily jolt: ‘The Lawmakers’ shifts to twice a week

For 41 years, every day that the Legislature has met during its annual, 40-day sessions, Georgia Public Broadcasting’s “The Lawmakers” has been there with a 30-minute, televised recap.

That’s about to change. One of Georgia’s longest-running public affairs programs will shift to a twice-a-week format for its 42nd season.

GPB executives say the decision has more to do with viewership than budget cuts. The problem is that “The Lawmakers” has aired only on days when state lawmakers meet. But the 40 days allotted to each session are spread out over four months.

“We’re trying to make it easier for the viewer to know when to expect it. If you don’t have a legislative calendar in front of you, in the past it was really hard to figure out when the show was airing,” said Robert Brienza, vice president for news and sports at GPB.

“One week it may be on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, the next week it may not be on at all. The third week, it may be on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday,” he said.

For the first week of the Legislature, “The Lawmakers” will broadcast the full week in its traditional 7 p.m. slot, Monday through Friday. But beyond that, the program will broadcast at 7 p.m. each Thursday and Friday.

“The Lawmakers” last year averaged an estimated viewership of 11,500 Atlanta households or 17,500 statewide — a number GPB would obviously like to see grow. But this is a decision more ticklish than you might think. Legislators, who vote on GPB’s budget each year, tend to think of “The Lawmakers” as their program.

Teya Ryan, president and executive director of GPB, has sent a note to lawmakers explaining the change. Also, GPB intends to send out a daily email to lawmakers – and anyone else who’s interested – that will include the previous day’s highlights. Video will be a major feature of the emails.

“It should be fairly robust,” Brienza said.

Full disclosure: Yours truly is scheduled to be an (unpaid) panelist on the opening Jan. 14 edition of the program.

***
Former Gen. Stanley McChrystal, who led the war in Afghanistan and can’t be accused of toadying for the Obama administration, had this to say about assault weapons in civilian hands today, on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe”:

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Said McChrystal:

“I spent a career carrying typically either an M-16 or later an M-4 carbine. An M-4 carbine fires a .223-caliber round, which is 5.56 mm, at about 3000 feet per second. When it hits a human body, the effects are devastating. It’s designed to do that. And that’s what our soldiers ought to carry. I personally don’t think there’s any need for that kind of weaponry on the streets and particularly around the schools in America.

“I believe that we’ve got to take a serious look—I understand everyone’s desire to have whatever they want—but we’ve got to protect our children, we’ve got to protect our police, we’ve got to protect our population, and I think we’ve got to take a very mature look at that….

“I think serious action is necessary. Sometimes we talk about very limited actions on the edges and I just don’t think that’s enough.”

***
When you’re the new guy, everyone wants to make friends. Gov. Nathan Deal, Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle, and House Speaker David Ralston on Wednesday will host a fund-raiser at the Buckhead Club for David Shafer, who will become the Senate president pro tem when the Legislature convenes next week.

The invitation listed no minimum contribution for entry, but did note that the contribution cap was $2,500 for each election cycle.

***
AJC photographers have put a number of archived photos of Georgia political figures on Tumblr – you’ll want to see them. Among them is this election night photo of Newt Gingrich and wife Jackie, taken in 1974 when Gingrich unsuccessfully challenged U.S. Rep. Jack Flynt:

gingrich1974

***
The AJC’s Politifact Georgia today takes a look at the claim by Amy Kremer, chair of the Tea Party Express, that U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss is among those who “votes with the Democrats more than they do with the conservatives.” Spoiler alert: It ain’t so.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

For instant updates, follow me on Twitter, or connect with me on Facebook.

34 comments Add your comment

Aesop's Fables and other Lib Economic Theories

January 8th, 2013
11:42 am

When it hits a human body, the effects are devastating.

This coming from a guy that sends his troops off into battle armed to the teeth.

Road Scholar

January 8th, 2013
11:53 am

Is this the affect that Chip Rogers will have on GPB?

clem

January 8th, 2013
12:03 pm

the general assembly likely does not want an informed public; quality of show has gone done hill remarkably about the same time repubs came to power.

Bullseye

January 8th, 2013
12:07 pm

He is correct Lib Economic.

Kris

January 8th, 2013
12:20 pm

What a shame GPB getting ready for the (rogers ) worst….

So the fundraiser today for Shafer….hmm to introduce him to lobbyist and Ladies of the evening and to educate him in the ways of corruptness.
Just saying.

RomeGaGuy

January 8th, 2013
12:24 pm

Which number of Newt’s wives was Jackie? I cant remember

jebbery

January 8th, 2013
12:34 pm

I’ll take two days a week of Lawmakers over that crap Georgia Gang…what a bunch of windbags (except you of course Galloway).

Aesop's Fables and other Lib Economic Theories

January 8th, 2013
12:35 pm

I can see why Newt got divorced.

disappointed

January 8th, 2013
12:48 pm

Lawmakers is an excellent show, and I wonder what the real reasons are for limiting to twice a week. On those days that the General Assembly does meet, there’s often plenty that’s important, both in committee meetings and on the House and Senate floor, and GPTV should be letting the public know right away. Shine a light on it!

honested

January 8th, 2013
12:49 pm

I guess the change in the ‘Lawmakers’ couldn’t have anything with GPB’s newest ‘executive’ wanting to keep the heat off the Gold Dome now could it?

honested

January 8th, 2013
12:51 pm

aesop,

Is it the same reason you never got married?

Aesop's Fables and other Lib Economic Theories

January 8th, 2013
12:54 pm

wow, what a zinger.

Kris

January 8th, 2013
12:56 pm

honested “”" wanting to keep the heat off the Gold Dome now could it?”"

Keeping the dealings shady…

td

January 8th, 2013
1:09 pm

I personally like lawmakers but in reality it has become just a cheer show for the legislature in the past few years and gives you less information then this paper does about actual legislation. I hope at least they will really cover the legislation and start asking the hard questions again.

Puerile Pedant

January 8th, 2013
1:33 pm

“The Lawmakers” is a misleading title; they should change it the “Porkinators”,

or maybe “The Grandstanders”

or how about: “The ObamaHaters”

or my personal favorite (because it riffs off a great show: “The OutofTouchables”

Synonymous

January 8th, 2013
2:02 pm

Note to General McChrystal:

The 2nd Amendment is designed to protect Americans from the possibility – however remote – of their own government attempting to impose tyrannical rule over them. A disarmed public is easily controlled by dictators and tyrants.

As well, any weapon in the hands of the wrong person is dangerous to everyone. An M-16 in the hands of the right person is a danger to no one but the wrong person.

yellowdog

January 8th, 2013
2:08 pm

of course chip rogers has something to do with this despite his comments about his working for the nominal director;. I think there was a big audience for it each year; some of us looked forward to it to see what our elected reps were doing to rip off the citizenry or file outrageous bills. and, i always looked forward to jim galloway and his press colleagues for some mature analyzing of the days events. ill be watching on the 14th!

Voto no tsplost

January 8th, 2013
3:45 pm

TD “just a cheer show for the legislature in the past few years and gives you less information then this paper ”
That’s just fine for you big city folk that still have a paper, actually we get some good info from the show, and all this seems a big mistake.

Will Jones - Atlanta Jeffersonian Exegesis

January 8th, 2013
5:02 pm

The American People is covenanted sovereign by the Creator, Creed, and the Second Amendment to protect itself from psychopathic traitors. who had no problem putting three rounds within the circumference of a half-dollar coin on an American Hero’s forehead because he mentioned our troops’ role protecting the heroin trade Bush’s 9/11 restarted or why we shouldn’t go to Iraq.

McChrystal is a white-trash Tennessee sociopath who ran the “hit” on Pat Tillman, and its attempted cover-up.

Clearly the ruling false elite psychopathy is trotting him out as potential POTUS timber-cum-tyrant for hire, lol.

Will Jones - Atlanta Jeffersonian Exegesis

January 8th, 2013
5:04 pm

Jackie was the “wife” Newt used to dodge Vietnam…his “first.”

clem

January 8th, 2013
6:34 pm

true that, wonder if asshop served?

jd

January 8th, 2013
7:43 pm

Thomas Jefferson figured out that ignorance is lethal to the prosperity of the republic — guns are just a way of distracting the ignorant from learning about the real issues that affect them…

Cherokee

January 8th, 2013
8:10 pm

“This coming from a guy that sends his troops off into battle armed to the teeth”

You’re kidding right? The purpose of the military is to make sure the other guy is the one getting killed.

Little bit different than a kindergarten class in Connecticut.

Will Jones - Atlanta Jeffersonian Exegesis

January 8th, 2013
8:44 pm

Produce the shooter filmed running up the hill from the police at Sandy Hook. Let’s act like American men guided only by Truth, Justice, Reason and G-d.

Hiram

January 8th, 2013
8:59 pm

The next generation of warfare, autonomous military robots, should quell the “got to keep the tyrannical government at bay” hysterical dilusionals. But wait, the tyrannical government already has drones armed with hellfire missiles – using the second amendment argument, shouldn’t that justify the sale of Patriot missiles to the general public. Just think how cool it will look to have a Patriot missile launcher, loaded with side by side missiles, mounted in the bed of your monster truck – talking about a chick magnet. And, at 2-3 million dollars a unit, Raytheon will probably throw in a couple of camo hats.

Aesop's Fables and other Lib Economic Theories

January 8th, 2013
9:44 pm

You’re kidding right? The purpose of the military is to make sure the other guy is the one getting killed.

No kidding, sherlock. So why not apply the same principal to protecting our children?

Aesop's Fables and other Lib Economic Theories

January 8th, 2013
9:49 pm

But wait, the tyrannical government already has drones armed with hellfire missiles – using the second amendment argument, shouldn’t that justify the sale of Patriot missiles to the general public?

I added your question mark for you, genius.

The Army has the drones with the Hellfires. And I’m not worried about the Army. It is not full of socialist whackjobs and America haters like the government is. If it ever came down to it, I believe the Army would side up against you punk liberals. In a heartbeat.

hiram

January 8th, 2013
10:30 pm

I lay even money that asshop still lives with his mom, and he must be in one of those schools where kids learn how to make shoeshine boxes – the ones that separate them from the regular kids, so they won’t bring down the test scores. He lacks even a rudimentary knowledge of civics – not knowing that the president is the commander and chief of the military – they even let W play that role.

hiram

January 8th, 2013
10:34 pm

Btw, rhetorical questions don;t need question marks, genius.

Aesop's Fables and other Lib Economic Theories

January 9th, 2013
6:57 am

Aahhh, yes, the Three Horsemen of the Apoplectic.

Tom E Gunn

January 9th, 2013
8:12 am

do we really want to start counting wives as a test for politicians? I have had three and I am not so bad. Heck it’s hard to find a woman you can live with!

Oxwinkle

January 9th, 2013
8:34 am

Haven’t watched the program since they replaced Tom “The King” Hughes with someone else as host.

Outer Perimeter

January 9th, 2013
9:42 am

The program just isn’t the same after they banned the legislators from wearing green leisure suits with purple ties!

[...] Background from Tuesday’s post: One of Georgia’s longest-running public affairs programs will shift to a twice-a-week format for its 42nd season. [...]