Progressive talk radio

Progressive Talk Radio

Progressive talk radio

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Progressive talk radio is a talk radio format devoted to expressing liberal or progressive viewpoints of issues, as opposed to conservative talk radio. In the United States, the format includes syndicated personalities such as Thom Hartmann, Randi Rhodes, Bill Press, Alan Colmes, and Stephanie Miller.


Liberal talk radio programs have existed for many decades. In the 1960s, freeform rock stations featured outspoken air personalities who mixed progressive rock with controversial commentary and news reports on current events such as the Vietnam War and the Civil Rights Movement. A few talk stations, such as WMCA in New York and WERE in Cleveland carried controversial counterculture talk programming. Politically oriented talk radio stations often featured liberal hosts such as Alan Berg and Alex Bennett sharing the schedule with more conservative personalities. One of the most notable liberal talk-show hosts was Michael Jackson, who had a show for 35 years at KABC in Los Angeles, often commenting on both political and national issues.


Two developments in the late 1980s – the struggle of AM radio music formats against FM, and the repeal of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) "fairness doctrine" – set the stage for the growth of more political talk programming. Conservative commentator Rush Limbaugh became one of the early success stories of this new radio environment, helped by a syndication...
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