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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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    My Life As…On The Campaign Trail

    Working 24 hour days seven days a week is a tough job, especially when you’re following presidential and vice presidential candidates around the clock. Four guest speakers came to Stony Brook on Monday to share their personal experiences of following around President-elect Barack Obama, Senator John McCain and others who ran in this year’s election.

    The panel spoke about how even though they thought they liked a candidate, after being with them for months at a time they got sick of hearing the same thing being repeated over and over again.

    Susan Page, the Washington bureau chief for USA Today, was amazed with all of the breakthrough candidates we had this year. From an African American man winning the presidency to a serious woman running for the vice presidency to a Hispanic candidate in the beginning, she described this election as nothing we’ve ever seen before.

    Drew Levinson, a correspondent for CBS Newspath since 1997, covered all of the candidates for over two years. He spoke about how the technology we have today is vastly different than what we had a few years ago. Levinson and his team found themselves updating their information almost every hour to keep up with the fast-moving information. When bad news came out about Obama, he was impressed with how quickly Obama’s campaign was to defend the candidate. Levinson also explained the importance of how some candidates were more television savvy than others.

    Scott Conroy, an off-air reporter for CBS, was on the road with Mitt Romney for five months and then Gov. Sarah Palin of Alaska for two. This was the first campaign he’s ever covered, and was constantly sending his reports to fellow journalists at CBS.

    “It’s really being the eyes and ears of the campaign,” Conroy said. Getting to know the candidates made him almost have sympathy for them, but he wasn’t there to become a friend — he was there to report news.

    Julie Delgado, of CBS Mobile News, worked mainly at the Democratic National Convention for this year’s election coverage. She spoke of the crazy pressure that was put on her, such as producing 14 stories in 48 hours and how the Obama campaign used their skills in social networking to reach out to voters — especially young adults.

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