The Oberlin Review
<< Front page News April 20, 2007

Final Thoughts with Jerry Springer

Do you plan on returning to politics? If so, in what capacity?
I am today announcing my candidacy [laughs]. I might. It’s always in the back of my mind — so yeah, there’s a possibility that in a couple of years I’ll do that.

As what?
I’m not sure. I mean obviously, it could very well be, well, the only thing that’s open would be the Senate, so that’d be something that I would think about. I’ll make up my mind as we get closer, but I would think about that. I’ve thought about it for the last ten years, so it’s not new.

You ended your radio show Springer on the Radio after nearly two successful years because you were too busy with projects that developed as a result of your appearances on Dancing with the Stars. What are those projects?
Well, actually I’m leaving tomorrow morning. I’m the new host of America’s Got Talent. I’m taking Regis’s place, out in L.A. I’ll be hosting that show this season, so I have to start working on that now. I do that and I do a show in England and obviously my show here, so it’s a full plate. I mean I enjoy it, I’m not complaining about it.

What do you enjoy about television?
It’s just fun being around a lot of people. You know, relating to people, talking to people, joking with people. I just enjoy that give and take, which are the particular jobs I’ve had in television. The fact that there’s a camera is not the relevant part&hellip;I like the live audience. I must admit, that’s good.

What do you consider the defining moment in your career?
Well, I married my horse. That was it. That was a great one. No, I think my career has taken so many turns it’s hard to say a career ’cause it has been a bunch of different ones. I’ve been incredibly lucky and each job I’ve had has resulted in the opportunity to do the other. The only thing I ever really wanted to be was Mayor of Cincinnati. That I went after. I really wanted that. That led to me being a news anchor and the news anchor led me to getting a show and the show led to me being on Dancing with the Stars and that led to me getting this show. I’ve been real lucky but there’s no one defining moment.

Who is your role model?
The only accurate answer is my parents. And as I get older I see more and more of myself in each of my parents. So that’s it. Who did I admire outside of my family? Bobby Kennedy for politics.

Do you consider yourself a role model?

No. For my daughter, yeah. I don’t think we ought to pick celebrities to be — celebrities are famous for what they’re famous for. If at all possible, your parents should be your role model.

If you could give one piece of advice to aspiring politicians, what would it be?

Resign and appoint me. [Laughs]

Do you see any parallels between the fights that broke out on your show and squabbling in the political arena?
Well, the people on my show are honest. [Laughs] Actually there’s one thing about the people on my show that I find better than people often times in politics. People on my show don’t put on any airs. In other words, they say what they feel, they don’t worry about how is this gonna play the crowd. There’s more authenticity. I think the problem with politics today is too many politicians aren’t authentic.

Is a good sense of humor important to have as a politician?
As a human being.

What kind of social policies would prevent the kind of personal tragedies you see on The Jerry Springer Show?
Well the easiest answer is in terms of what the government does: policies, which permit the family to become a viable economic and social structure. You can’t say we have family values and then not provide people with an education. You can’t say we have family values and not provide people with and make sure they have a job. So you have to give. There has to be a policy which permits people to have a family that has economic and social viability. Then kids will grow up in stable homes or at least have a chance — there is never a guarantee — but there’s a chance of making it in this world.


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