Although reality shows are all the rage, some members of Congress say the programs ruling the ratings race aren’t on their lists of must-see TV.
“I don’t watch, you know, ‘Housewives’ shows, I don’t watch the ‘Jersey Shore’ thing, I don’t watch any of that stuff,” said Rep. Keith Ellison, when ITK caught up with him several weeks ago at “All in the Family” producer and People for the American Way founder Norman Lear’s 90th birthday party at the Kennedy Center.
Forget Snooki and Teresa Giudice — the Minnesota Democrat longed for characters like the ones from his childhood, such as Archie Bunker and George Jefferson: “You watch [reality shows] for a while and they’re not making any point other than you have shallow and materialistic people. I don’t want to be hypercritical of any individual, but the shows as a whole make no point.”
Even though Ellison isn’t a fan of the docu-soap genre, he admits he did like a different ABC drama involving housewives.
“I watch ‘Law and Order,’ but I usually don’t watch the regular shows. I watched ‘Desperate Housewives’ for a minute,” he said.
Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) was hard-pressed to name a single show he looks forward to each week. After taking a minute to rack his brain, the freshman senator told us, “I’ve seen ‘The Daily Show’ — that’s about it. I think a lot of folks don’t think senators work that hard, but I’m on a train four hours a day every day because I commute from Delaware. And then I have a lot to read for the next day.”
Coons was more familiar with his wife’s viewing habits, saying, “I mean, my family — they watch ‘Suburgatory’ and ‘Modern Family.’ ”
And as far as his kids, including a daughter and his tween twin boys?
“My boys watch other things I probably shouldn’t say — ‘Family Guy’ and ‘Futurama,’ ” Coons revealed with a laugh.