Tonight is a political television event months in the making. Anticipated to have more viewers around the nation than the Super Bowl, the first presidential debate at Hofstra University is supposed to pull an audience of approximately 100 million people. But with 40 days to go before Election Day, numbers, polls, and ratings are becoming more important than ever. Polls have been crunching numbers non-stop. Currently, Bloomberg.com says it’s a dead heat with a 46 percent tie between the candidates and Nate Silver at 538.com predicts 51.5 percent for Clinton and 48.5 percent for Trump. While the gap closes between the candidates, things are sure to be different by this time tomorrow, and we will have the latest tomorrow night with an in-depth analysis of what’s to come.
Then finally, in 1967, a new show aired on a local station in Dayton, Ohio, that audiences had never seen. The Phil Donahue Show put thought-provoking topics, controversial guests, and the audience together for the first time to create conversations not previously seen on television. The show ran for 29 years and defined the genre of daytime talk TV forever, paving the way for talk show sensations from Oprah Winfrey to Ellen DeGeneres. At the helm of this trail-blazing talk show is Phil Donahue himself, someone who has never been shy to discuss anything from politics, to the media, to Washington, and anything in between. This pioneer of daytime talk joins us tonight to discuss the highs and lows of his career.