Launch in Des Moines Marks Two Years Until Next Presidential Inauguration
WASHINGTON — With the first votes cast in the next presidential election less than a year away, today C-SPAN debuts the new Campaign 2008 Bus, dedicated to following the action in one of the most competitive races in history. The 45-foot mobile production studio, a revamped version of the network´s award-winning School Bus, promotes and enhances C-SPAN´s extensive political coverage by traveling to major political events in battleground states, touring state capitols, and visiting middle and high school classrooms around the nation while meeting with local political leaders and journalists, candidates and voters on the campaign trail.
The inaugural "Road to the White House" tour, named after C-SPAN´s signature political program that marks 20 years on the air in 2008, premieres this week in Columbus, Ohio, at events with local cable affiliates before traveling to Des Moines, Iowa, for the tour´s official kick-off on Sunday, January 21, exactly two years to the day before the next presidential inauguration. C-SPAN is marking the date with a LIVE "Road to the White House" program at 6:30 p.m. ET, from inside the Campaign 2008 Bus at the steps of the Iowa statehouse. Previewing the historic Iowa Caucuses that are less than a year away on January 14, 2008, and where the first votes will be cast in the race for president, are David Yepsen, political columnist for the Des Moines Register, Mike Mahaffey, former chairman of the Iowa Republican Party, and Dave Nagle, former Democratic congressman and former chairman of the Iowa Democratic Party.
"With early interest in presidential politics growing, we´re excited to get on the road now with the Campaign 2008 Bus," said Steve Scully, political editor at C-SPAN. "All politics is local, and our traveling television studio gets us outside of Washington, D.C., talking to voters and political leaders in early primary and caucus states while adding more value to our political programming and increasing our visibility at major events in the campaign cycle."
The Campaign 2008 Bus left the garage in Columbus, Ohio, this week sporting a new exterior design wrap in election themes and state-of-the-art television production studio. C-SPAN will conduct interviews with voters, elected officials, candidates and community leaders that are subject to air on the C-SPAN networks, C-SPAN Radio, www.c-span.org or the network´s one-stop 2008 election site, www.CampaignNetwork.org. C-SPAN bus representatives also offer tours to the public at each stop, giving visitors an inside look at C-SPAN´s extensive political resources and production capabilities.
"We offer television´s most extensive coverage of the presidential election and the Campaign 2008 Bus is an integral part of that commitment," said Marty Dominguez, vice president of marketing at C-SPAN. "As the political network of record, our dedicated coverage of the 2008 presidential elections will be reflected throughout our corporate, education, community and affiliate relations initiatives."
In partnership with cable affiliates, the "Road to the White House Tour" continues the mission of the C-SPAN School Bus by engaging teachers, students and even first-time voters in grades 6 through 12 through a variety of educational programs. C-SPAN Classroom, www.c-spanclassroom.org, a free membership service for teachers, offers a selection of free, downloadable video clips, speeches, candidate announcements and political events from the network´s related coverage that are "classroom-ready" and updated weekly. The bus hosts regular student call-in segments during "Washington Journal," C-SPAN´s live, daily morning program, with young people posing questions on-air to studio guests or commenting on the show´s question of the day from their school. For educators, C-SPAN bus representatives conduct seminars at schools and conferences to demonstrate how the network´s primary resources may be used in the classroom.
After the events in Des Moines, Iowa, C-SPAN´s Campaign 2008 Bus continues to another state capitol, Springfield, Ill. on Thursday, January 25; St. Louis on Friday, January 26, through Sunday, January 28; and Nashville, Tenn. on Tuesday, January 30, and Wednesday, January 31. Visit www.Campaign2008Bus.com to find out when the new bus will be in your community or to request a visit.
Launched in 1988, C-SPAN´s signature political program, "Road to the White House," features regular coverage of the candidates, issues and events that shape presidential politics. "Road to the White House" airs on C-SPAN Sundays at 6:30 / 9:30 p.m. ET, is simulcast on C-SPAN Radio and www.c-span.org
C-SPAN, the political network of record, was created in 1979 by America´s cable companies as a public service. C-SPAN is currently available in 90.7 million households.