Episode
May 06, 2016 at 5:54 am

Laura Nahmias, Politico New York’s City Hall reporter, sits down with us to talk about the campaign finance laws that prompted an investigation by the New York State Board of Elections into the donations Mayor Bill DeBlasio received from his 2013 mayoral campaign. These donations are said to be between him, union allies, and political groups with the alleged intention of creating a campaign that would allow Democrats to regain control of the State Senate. A Democratic controlled State Senate was never reached, but a probe was initiated to investigate the campaign for ignoring the fact that individual donors are supposed to adhere to a limit of $10,000 donated to a campaign. How is the Mayor’s office handling the controversy sparked by this investigation? We have analysis. Then Bella Abzug didn’t take “no” for an answer. The congresswoman was a New York political icon in the 70’s, and will forever be remembered as a champion of women’s rights, and for encouraging a new generation of women to take up leadership roles. Now, nearly twenty years after Bella’s passing, her daughter Liz continues her cause with a non-profit organization named after her mother. Liz Abzug shares with us how the Bella Abzug Leadership Institute is trying to level the political playing field by helping young women get the necessary education and training to become tomorrow’s leaders. Next, Dolly Parton is many things: a singer-songwriter, actress, philanthropist, Kennedy Center Honoree and National Medal of Arts recipient. But the “queen” of country music hasn’t forgotten where she came from. Raised in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee, Parton rose from poverty to become one of the most successful musicians of all time. Her iconic song, “Coat of Many Colors,” tells Parton’s story of growing up poor, and was recently made into a TV movie. Tonight we sit down with the music legend to talk about the story behind that song and her illustrious career. Finally, he sings, and she reports. Rock legend Rod Stewart and Hoda Kotb, a co-host of NBC’s Today Show, have a lot to talk about. Stewart is still touring and performing on some of the biggest stages around the world, but he recently took a break to appear on a different kind of stage with Kotb at New York’s 92nd Street Y. Tonight we listen in on their conversation as they discuss one of his most iconic songs.

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May 05, 2016 at 6:26 pm

Dolly Parton is many things: a singer-songwriter, actress, philanthropist, Kennedy Center Honoree and National Medal of Arts recipient. But the “queen” of country music hasn’t forgotten where she came from. Raised in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee, Parton rose from poverty to become one of the most successful musicians of all time. Her iconic song, “Coat of Many Colors,” tells Parton’s story of growing up poor, and was recently made into a TV movie. Tonight we sit down with the music legend to talk about the story behind that song and her illustrious career.

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Episode
May 03, 2016 at 5:42 am

Lately there has been plenty of finger-pointing among Republicans over what led to the rise of Donald Trump and his status as GOP front runner. Steven Rattner, a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times and a former treasury advisor to President Obama, believes he knows the real reason for the billionaire businessman’s ascension and joins us tonight to share his take. Hint: Republicans should take a long, hard look at themselves. A year ago, Carmelyn Malalis took over as Commissioner of the New York City Commission on Human Rights. Within weeks of being in office, Malalis vowed to enforce the city’s human rights laws and revitalize the agency. Now, we speak with her to see what has been accomplished and what still needs to be done for undocumented immigrants who find themselves at the mercy of the law and discrimination. Every year, on the first Monday in May, New York City hosts its most fashionable and star-studded party, held by The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute. Not many score a ticket to the affair, organized by Vogue’s Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour, and even less get to see what goes into planning the event. Now, in a new documentary, The First Monday in May, filmmaker Andrew Rossi gives us an inside look into last year’s exclusive Met Gala. He joins us to discuss the documentary and the extravagant “A-list” metropolitan event. Then finally, is the Bronx heading towards a renaissance? An article in the American Prospect is calling attention to new businesses and investments that are injecting the northern-most borough with greater life. Bronx Council Member Ritchie Torres and executive editor of the American Prospect Harold Meyerson analyze this revival and consider whether or not these small changes are indicators of what’s to come.

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May 02, 2016 at 6:27 pm

A year ago, Carmelyn Malalis took over as Commissioner of the New York City Commission on Human Rights. Within weeks of being in office, Malalis vowed to enforce the city’s human rights laws and revitalize the agency. Now, we speak with her to see what has been accomplished and what still needs to be done for undocumented immigrants who find themselves at the mercy of the law and discrimination.

Continue Reading

Clip
May 02, 2016 at 6:26 pm

Every year, on the first Monday in May, New York City hosts its most fashionable and star-studded party, held by The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute. Not many score a ticket to the affair, organized by Vogue’s Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour, and even less get to see what goes into planning the event. Now, in a new documentary, The First Monday in May, filmmaker Andrew Rossi gives us an inside look into last year’s exclusive Met Gala. He joins us to discuss the documentary and the extravagant “A-list” metropolitan event.

Continue Reading

Clip
May 02, 2016 at 6:25 pm

Is the Bronx heading towards a renaissance? An article in the American Prospect is calling attention to new businesses and investments that are injecting the northern-most borough with greater life. Bronx Council Member Ritchie Torres and executive editor of the American Prospect Harold Meyerson analyze this revival and consider whether or not these small changes are indicators of what’s to come.

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Episode
April 29, 2016 at 5:49 am

Donald Trump is never one to back down from a fight, and now he has a new one involving his now defunct Trump University. The university has faced a number of lawsuits over the years, with the most recent being one from New York’s Attorney General alleging that it operated illegally, and defrauded it’s students. Trump has pointed to overwhelmingly positive reviews of the university by its former students, but in a recent exclusive investigation by the New York Times, some very different feedback emerged. Steve Eder, the New York Times reporter who broke the story, dives into what the investigation has uncovered so far. Students dealing with poverty, abuse and instability at home often have a harder time achieving academic success and going on to higher education. The non-profit Children’s Defense Fund-New York advocates for children’s rights to education, health, safety and equity. As part of our ongoing initiative “Chasing the Dream: Poverty and Opportunity and America,” we have a look at the organization’s Beat the Odds scholarship program, which recognizes a handful of students who have overcome tremendous obstacles. Next, under a new initiative, drug users could inject heroin while supervised by a nurse. Finally, performer Megan Hilty has made her mark on Manhattan. Best known for her role as Ivy Lynn on NBC’s musical drama “Smash,” Megan Hilty is also a seasoned Broadway actress, having starred in “Wicked” and “9 to 5 The Musical.” More recently, Hilty snagged a Drama League Award nomination for her portrayal of Brooke Ashton in the revival of the slapstick comedy “Noises Off.” Now, she shares with us what it’s like channeling big names like Dolly Parton, and she talks about her upcoming live performance at the New York staple, the Café Carlyle.

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April 28, 2016 at 6:28 pm

Donald Trump is never one to back down from a fight, and now he has a new one involving his now defunct Trump University. The university has faced a number of lawsuits over the years, with the most recent being one from New York’s Attorney General alleging that it operated illegally, and defrauded it’s students. Trump has pointed to overwhelmingly positive reviews of the university by its former students, but in a recent exclusive investigation by the New York Times, some very different feedback emerged. Steve Eder, the New York Times reporter who broke the story, dives into what the investigation has uncovered so far.

Continue Reading

Clip
April 28, 2016 at 6:27 pm

Students dealing with poverty, abuse and instability at home often have a harder time achieving academic success and going on to higher education. The non-profit Children’s Defense Fund-New York advocates for children’s rights to education, health, safety and equity. As part of our ongoing initiative “Chasing the Dream: Poverty and Opportunity and America,” we have a look at the organization’s Beat the Odds scholarship program, which recognizes a handful of students who have overcome tremendous obstacles.

Continue Reading

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MetroFocus is made possible by James and Merryl Tisch, the Anderson Family Fund, Judy and Josh Weston, Bernard and Irene Schwartz, Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, the Cheryl and Philip Milstein Family, Rosalind P. Walter, The Dorothy Schiff Endowment for News and Public Affairs Programming, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Jody and John Arnhold, the Tiger Baron Foundation, the Robert C. and Tina Sohn Foundation, the Metropolitan Media Fund, Laura and Jim Ross, the Dorothy Pacella Fund, in memory of Vincent Pacella and Shailaja and Umesh Nagarkatte.

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