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Newton Minow appears on “Chicago Tonight” via Zoom on Monday, May 10, 2021. (WTTW News)

Newton Minow, a former chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, played a key role in public media. Here’s what he thinks about television today — six decades after his famous “vast wasteland” speech.

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President Donald Trump speaks during the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (WTTW News via CNN)

Interruption, disruption and insults. Tuesday’s presidential debate was arguably the most chaotic ever produced. We get reaction from the father of presidential debates, the former FCC chairman who first proposed the idea in 1955.

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Newton Minow appears on “Chicago Tonight” in an episode that aired July 23, 2015.

Newton Minow has been a member of the WTTW board since 1967 when he joined as chairman. In an opinion piece, he writes: “For the sake of the United States of America and our values, we need your voices now.” 

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The last surviving member of the Kennedy administration and former chairman of WTTW received the nation’s highest civilian honor from President Barack Obama on Tuesday.

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President Barack Obama announced Wednesday the former WTTW Chairman and 20 others will receive the nation’s highest civilian honor at a ceremony later this month.

10 Things You Might Not Know About the Former FCC Chairman

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Former FCC chairman and WTTW trustee emeritus Newton Minow turns 90 on Sunday. While you may remember that he once famously called TV a “vast wasteland,” you might not know that he’s actually a big “Downton Abbey” fan. In honor of his upcoming birthday, we share 10 things about him that might just surprise you.

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The general consensus: Last week's GOP presidential debate on CNBC was a disaster, but it has led to a lot of discussion over what sort of format and approach upcoming debates should take. Newton Minow, who has been called the father of televised presidential debates, joins our discussion.

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We share what you had to say about the Better Government Association's report on police-involved shootings in Chicago, the rising price of rent across the city, whether or not the proposed tax on sugary beverages is a bitter pill, and Geoffrey Baer's conversation with Newton Minow.

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He famously called television a “vast wasteland," but Newton Minow's influence goes far beyond that iconic phrase. Geoffrey Baer sat down with Minow to talk about some current political issues.

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Newton Minow may be mostly remembered for his gutsy assessment of the television industry, calling the medium a “vast wasteland” as the fresh-faced, 34-year-old chairman of the Federal Communications Commission in 1961. But in the new documentary, Newton Minow: An American Story, veteran journalist Mike Leonard and local producer Mary Kay Wall examine how Minow’s life has had a far-reaching impact that still reverberates today.

Newton Minow on his 10 Tips for the Governor-Elect

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As a Democrat who voted for Republican Bruce Rauner, Newton Minow joins us to talk about his 10 tips for our new governor-elect to help make him an effective governor.

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Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan throws a curveball, asking voters to approve a possible 3 percent surcharge on millionaires to help pay for education. How does that play into a governor’s race that has already become about class warfare? Paris Schutz has the details on that, and how high-profile Democrats and Independents are coming out in support of Bruce Rauner. Read Newt Minow's endorsement of Rauner.

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John F. Kennedy's friend and FCC chair Newt Minow remembers his remarkable time with President Kennedy 50 years after the assassination.