My9 TV appearance - Sharpe James and Iraq

I was contacted early last week by Joe Silvestri of My9 News (WWOR tv based in Secaucus, NJ) about making an appearance on the talk show "New Jersey Now", which airs each Sunday at 12pm on Channel 9. I gladly accepted, and appeared in two 8 minute segments.
  1. The indictment of former Newark Mayor Sharpe James on corruption charges
  2. The ongoing debate about America's continuing military occupation of Iraq

Naturally, I appeared to offer the "Republican" angle, and opposite me was LeRoy Jones, Jr. LeRoy has extensive Democrat credentials - he served as a State Assemblyman for 8 years, in addition to two terms as an Essex County Freeholder. His career as an elected official was cut short when Nia Gill, running off-the-line to defend her State Senate seat in 2003, handed Jones a 10-point defeat (had he won, he would currently my State Senator, since Clifton is in the 34th District). LeRoy currently bears the unenviable task of serving as Democrat leader in the GOP stronghold of East Orange, and he works as a lobbyist for 1868 Public Affairs.

I found LeRoy to be a pleasure to chat with, both on-camera and off, and I look forward to facing off with him again.

Here is the video of the 1st segment on Sharpe James. It was fairly straightforward.

The second segment was more feisty. LeRoy chose to plug-and-play the Pelosi/Reid talking points, and delivered his message in an effective quantitative manner by repeatedly citing the cost of the war in dollars and lives.

My job, on the other hand, was trickier and much more qualitative. While I certainly wasn't about to defend Bush's Mesopotamian Misadventure, I wasn't about to join up with the likes of Dick Durbin. So I had to acknowledge the shortcomings of this neocon project that I've been vocal about for years now, but focus on the blame that must be laid on Congress and the pro-war Democrats therein. I decided to advance a paleoconservative argument around the need for a war declaration, according to Article I, Section 8 of the US Constitution.

I thank Joe Silvestri (whom I discovered was a former attendee of my lifelong parish, St. Ann Melkite Catholic Church in West Paterson!!!) for the opportunity and I look forward to future appearances.