The Capitol Connection

Thursdays 3:00 p.m., Saturdays at 5:30 a.m.

Maybe you voted for them and maybe you didn't, but either way, what they do and how they think affects you. Each week on The Capitol Connection, you can keep yourself abreast of political developments and gain a little insight into how New York State's politicians think when you listen in as political scientist Dr. Alan Chartock holds conversations with members from the Assembly and Senate, and other political movers and shakers.

Provocative topics, tough questions, spontaneity, and a casual low-key format make The Capitol Connection one of WAMC's most listened-to offerings. Tune in Thursdays at 3 PM, Saturdays at 5:30 AM. and Tuesdays at 6:30 PM on HD2 on WAMC Northeast Public Radio. The program is also carried on stations across New York State. Check your local listings for the time and frequency. 

Twitter: @Cap_Connection

Albany, NY – Alan Chartock talks to Rachel Leon, director of Common Cause New York, one of the more influential good government groups lobbying in Albany. Alan talks to Rachel about the group's current focus, redistricting reform. Rachel lays out the problems with the current method, the details of what such reform would look like, support for the reform from the Legislature, and more.

Albany, NY – WAMC's Alan Chartock talks to Albany County District Attorney David Soares, who explains his recent controversial statements made at an international drug conference in Canada. Soares, who criticized the U.S. war on drugs at the conference, found himself under attack by Albany mayor Jerry Jennings and law enforcement officials upon his return. Soares also talks about the continuing reform of New York's Rockefeller drug laws.

Albany, NY – Alan Chartock talks to state Assemblyman Michael Gianaris of Queens' 36th Assembly District. Gianaris talks with Alan about a subject important to both of them, redistricting reform. Specifically, they discuss a bill Gianaris has sponsored that would remove the Legislature's ability to redistrict, giving it to an independent commission of retired jurists. Alan questions whether or not the Republican-dominated Senate would ever pass such a bill, and whether or not that may soon be a moot point.

Albany, NY – Alan Chartock talks to former Public Advocate for New York City, Mark Green. Mr. Green is one of six Democrats running for state attorney general, and discusses his qualifications gained from his decades of public service. Alan also questions him on his recent endorsements and the consequences of political endorsements in general. The two also talk about candidates' responsibilities to disclose their finances and former clients in order to avoid potential conflicts of interest.

Albany, NY – On this week's Capitol Connection, Alan Chartock talks to Billy Easton, executive director of the Alliance for Quality Education, the political arm of the Campaign for Fiscal Equity. Alan and Billy discuss the current status of the landmark education-funding case CFE vs. New York State, the possibility of support from the state Senate's Republican conference, and why the education increases in this year's budget fail to address the problem.

Albany, NY – On this week's show, Alan Chartock talks to James Odato, a Capitol beat reporter for the Albany Times Union. Odato, who's covered state politics for the paper since 1997, shares his thoughts on the ongoing budget battle in Albany, the likelihood of a Democratic takeover of the state Legislature and possible pay hikes for New York lawmakers.

Albany, NY – On this week's Capitol Connection, Alan Chartock talks to state Senator Stephen Saland, chair of the Senate's Education Committee. Fresh off the Legislature's second on-time budget in a row, Sen. Saland talks about the need to balance capital and administrative spending, explains the state budget's hold harmless rules and gives his opinion on the effectiveness of charter schools in New York and around the country.

Albany, NY – On this week's Capitol Connection, Alan Chartock talks to Queens Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan, the new chair of the Assembly's Education Committee. She discusses the chances of another on-time budget for New York and what effect the continuing school funding court case might have. She also shares her experiences getting up to speed as a new committee chair, and tells Alan what she thinks of charter schools and teacher's unions.

Albany, NY – On this week's Capitol Connection, Alan Chartock talks to former Assembly Minority Leader John Faso, a conservative Republican candidate running for the governor's office. Faso discusses the qualifications that he feels make him a better candidate than William Weld, the former Massachusetts governor who is also seeking the Republican nomination, and the steps he feels need to be taken to keep New York competitive in the global economy.

Albany, NY – On this week's Capitol Connection, Alan Chartock talks to former U.S. Attorney for Western New York Denise O'Donnell, who's running in the Democratic primary for state attorney general. Alan asks O'Donnell about why her campaign stresses her prosecutorial experience, beating the name recognition value of people like Mark Green and Andrew Cuomo, and the relationship between the attorney general's office and local district attorneys.

Albany, NY – On this week's Capitol Connection, Alan Chartock welcomes labor organizer and social activist Jonathan Tasini, who's running against incumbent U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton on a platform of withdrawing American troops from Iraq as soon as possible. Tasini also has plans for a massive national project for investing in alternative energy, as well as a national free wireless program. Alan asks Tasini what he thinks of his chances against the popular senator and about the Democratic Party's shift to the center.

Albany, NY – On this week's Capitol Connection, Alan Chartock talks with state Senate Minority Leader David Paterson, who was recently picked by gubernatorial hopeful Eliot Spitzer as his choice for lieutenant governor. Sen. Paterson shares his thoughts on the role of a lieutenant governor, tells the story of how he was offered the spot, discusses the possibility of a takeover of the Senate by Democrats, and speculates on the potential Democratic infighting that may result.

Albany, NY – Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver shares the microphones with Alan Chartock this week to discuss the ramifications of charter schools in New York, as well as the need for the state to be a leader in stem cell research. Alan also quizzes him on Tom Suozzi's chances against Eliot Spitzer in this year's gubernatorial race and just what is going on at Manhattan's Ground Zero.

Albany, NY – On this week's show, Alan shares the mike with Assemblyman Richard Brodsky, who's looking to replace Eliot Spitzer in the state attorney general's office. Alan and Richard discuss the rigors of campaigning, Richard's opinion on the proper role of the attorney general, and why the name recognition of his opponents is not a problem.

Albany, NY – This week, Alan talks with Peter Baynes, the new executive director of New York State's Conference of Mayors. The two discuss Governor Pataki's new executive budget, and New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg's reaction to it. Also on the agenda is a talk on the governor's ability to shape the language of the state budget, the change in the political landscape when Pataki steps down at the end of the year, the chief concerns of New York's ailing cities, and the validity of mayoral term limits.

Albany, NY – On this week's show, Alan talks with the executive director of New York's School Boards Association, Tim Kremer, about the status of the state's public schools, the long-running Campaign for Fiscal Equity court case, and their opinions on Education Commisioner Richard Mills and NYC Schools Chancellor Joel Klein.

Albany, NY – George Marlin, a conservative commentator, author, frequent contributer to op-ed pages across the state and a former member of the Pataki administration talks about the history of New York's Conservative Party, how it has been taken for granted by Republicans, and his falling out with the governor.

Albany, NY – Alan interviews attorney general hopeful Mark Green, who once served as New York City's public advocate, the city's second-highest elected official. Mr. Green talks about his proposed agenda as attorney general, losing to Michael Bloomberg in his mayoral run, and the prospect of facing Andrew Cuomo, the son of former governor Mario Cuomo, who is also seeking the office.

Albany, NY – In this week's show, Alan Chartock interviews New York Daily News reporter Joe Mahoney about everything from a possible shift in the state Senate to Governor George Pataki's presidential ambitions.

Albany, NY – This week, Alan talks to Republican state Sen. Michael Balboni about the senator's campaign for state attorney general and New York's readiness (or lack thereof)in the event of large scale emergencies.

Albany, NY – On this edition of the show, Alan talks to Robert Ward, Director of Research for the Public Policy Institute, the research affiliate of the Business Council for New York State. Ward is also the author of "New York State Government: What it Does and How it Works."

 

Albany, NY – On this week's Capitol Connection, host Alan Chartock chats with journalist Jay Gallagher. Gallagher has been a reporter for over three decades and has been covering Albany since 1984. He is the author of "The Politics of Decline: A Chronicle of New York's Descent, and What You Can Do to Save Your State".

Albany, NY – New York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D) joins Alan Chartock for an illuminating half hour discussion about life in the jungle that is New York politics. Air date: 12/09/05.

Capitol Connection 548

Albany, NY – Dr. Alan Chartock and New York State Senator Hugh Farley discuss the upcoming elections and function of the Senate Standing Committee on Banks, of which the Senator is currently the Chair.

Capitol Connection 547

Albany, NY – Alan Chartock talks with EJ McMahon, Director of the Empire Center for New York Policy. They discuss the tax situation in the State of New York, and changes that may occur in the State Senate in the coming years. Air Date: 11/25/2005

Capitol Connection #546

Albany, NY – ALAN CHARTOCK SPEAKS WITH NEW YORK STATE SENATOR LIZ KRUEGER. ALAN AND SENATOR KRUEGER DISCUSS THE RECENT ELECTIONS, AND WHAT IT WILL MEAN FOR THE LEGISLATURE SHOULD THE DEMOCRATS TAKE THE MAJORITY IN 2006 OR 2008. AIR DATE: 11/18/05

Capitol Connection #545

Albany, NY – ALAN CHARTOCK SPEAKS WITH THE COMMISSIONER OF THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION, RICHARD MILLS. IN THEIR CONVERSATION THEY TALK ABOUT WHAT CHANGES SHOULD BE DONE TO THE PUBLIC EDUCATION SYSTEM IN ORDER TO HAVE A HIGHER HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATION RATE, AND WHAT SHOULD BE DONE TO IN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL TO CURB LOW TEST SCORES.

Capitol Connection #544

Albany, NY – ALAN CHARTOCK HAS A HEATED DISCUSSION WITH US SENATE CANDIDATE WILLIAM BRENNER.

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