majors Dan Hansen, Alex Kreitman and Erin Cunningham were among
the select university students from around the nation participating
in a Fund for American Studies-sponsored two-day conference, "Covering
Elections and Politics," in Washington, D.C., Jan. 30-31. In
attendance were 92 students representing 65 colleges and universities.
journalists and campaign experts shared insights on the 2004 election
at the sessions, held just four days after the New Hampshire primary.
The conference speakers shared their inside knowledge about how
media professionals cover the race for the White House and control
of Congress, as well as the political issues that will shape the
The Elon students
attended private briefings at Washington's places of power, where
they had a chance to meet policymakers behind the news.
a contributing editor for Newsweek magazine and a regular panelist
on the nationally syndicated show, The McLaughlin Group, spoke about
her ascent in journalism. She began her career as a Newsweek secretary
and became one of the first women to receive bylines in the major
CNN's senior Pentagon correspondent, spoke about developing strong
relationships within his beat. "Over time, you learn about
the subject," he said. "It's Pentagon policy and action,
not just policy execution. And you need to be able to look people
in the eye and tell them it's a good story." McIntyre was the
first to report that Saddam Hussein had been captured.
met with representatives from Congress Daily, Bureau of National
Affairs, The Hill and Congressional Quarterly while visiting the
Capitol to discuss how legislative issues shape congressional debate.
In addition, the group attended a taping of CNN's "Crossfire."
Knight-Ridder Tribune Info. Services and Rich Thomas, the Chief
Economic Correspondent at Newsweek spoke about "Getting the Facts
Straight - How to Cut Through the Spin." Richard Benedetto, White
House/political correspondent and columnist for USA Today and a
political columnist for Gannett News Service spoke about "Covering
the White House." Karlyn Bowman of American Enterprise Institute,
Sarah Simmons of Public Opinion Strategies, Bob Doyle of Sutters-Mill
Fund-Raising & Strategy and Ron Faucheaux of Campaigns & Elections
magazine all spoke about polling and politics. Fred Barnes of The
Weekly Standard and Fox News spoke about the 2004 election forecast.
submitted by Erin Cunningham