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Cable TV's Pundits Reflecting the Presidential Race

(clockwise) Political pundits Michelle Bernard, Donna Brazile, Roland Martin and Jamal Simmons Composite hide caption

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The New York Times has an interesting piece about the increased diversity among cable TV's political pundits (some of whom got their start on News & Notes and many of whom appear regularly on our show).

At issue:

Whether such moves signal real progress in diversifying the punditocracy or merely reflect the needs of a particular news cycle is the question, some media experts say. The most prominent positions on television remain overwhelmingly with those who are white and male, and some critics note how striking that non-inclusion can seem during this election year.

The president of the National Association of Black Journalists told the Times "black pundits often disappear as quickly as they arrive ... and too often talk only about race."

And blogger, professor, and frequent News & Notes guest Mark Anthony Neal offered this thought-provoking quote:

"There is suddenly a demand for smart Negroes. You're seeing a lot less of the Jesse Jacksons and the Al Sharptons and more academics and thought-leaders. This is expressly in response to Barack Obama, less so Hillary. Because of the combination of Hillary and Barack, you're seeing more black women."

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What do you think? And which of the pundits is your favorite?

Graphic: Hour by Hour: The Many Faces of Political Pundits

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