CNN to broadcast two live shows from SMPA this week

Jack Morton Auditorium will be home to two live television shows hosted by CNN’s Lou Dobbs Wednesday and Thursday night.

The hour-long special editions of “Lou Dobbs tonight” will be nationally aired at 8 p.m. from the Media and Public Affairs Building. The free event is open to students, faculty and staff, and the University will also invite community members and special guests, said Media Relations Director Tracy Schario.

Wednesday’s show, billed “The War Within,” will feature panel discussion on drug and alcohol abuse and the prevalence of narcotics along the U.S.-Mexico border. Thursday’s discussion of the “War on the Middle Class” will include debate on issues related to education, immigration, jobs and healthcare.

Schario said the University is “very pleased” with CNN’s broadcasting from the auditorium, which was formerly the home to three nationally televised programs, including the political debate show “Crossfire.”

“We welcome Lou Dobbs with all the energy, attention and dedication we had for regular programs CNN had for more than five years,” she said.

The cable news network launched “Crossfire” in April 2002. After the show’s cancellation in May 2005, CNN continued its relationship with GW by taping “On the Story” and “Reliable Sources” over the next year and a half.

The network announced this January that it would end its contract a year early, but agreed to carry on its association with the University.

“We hope to continue to be able to work with the wonderful students at GW on editorial projects, but it is time for our use of the Jack Morton Auditorium to come to an end,” CNN spokesperson Edie Emery said after the network backed out of taping “Reliable Sources.”

Schario said the University is still the go-to spot for the network’s special programming.

“We’ve had a long-term relationship with CNN, even though they are no longer renting the facility on an annual basis, we had an understanding when doing special events in the D.C. area they’d consider GW a primary venue,” Schario said. She added that no other plans for show broadcasts from campus are known and that scheduling is on an “ad-hoc basis.”

GW community members can obtain tickets by e-mailing cnn@gwu.edu and including a name, telephone number, e-mail address, number of tickets and date of the show.

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