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Michael Smerconish Bio, Life, and Career:
Michael Andrew Smerconish (/smoke/sour-KON-ish; born March 15, 1962) is a well-known radio personality and television presenter in the United States of America. He is also a political analyst, newspaper columnist, author, and attorney. On weekdays, he hosts The Michael Smerconish Program at 9:00 a.m. ET on SiriusXM’s POTUS Channel (124). On weekends, he hosts the program Smerconish at 9:00 a.m. ET on CNN and CNN International.
He writes a column for the Sunday edition of The Philadelphia Inquirer’s newspaper. Smerconish is the author of seven books, six of which are works of non-fiction, and one work of fiction. In addition to that, he is of counsel to the legal firm of Kline & Specter in Philadelphia. Smerconish was the son of Florence Smerconish, whose maiden name was Grovich, and Walter Smerconish, who raised him in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. His family is originally from Italy, Montenegro, and Galicia, which is located in Eastern Europe.
He received his high school diploma from Central Bucks High School West, which is a public high school located in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. He attended Lehigh University for his undergraduate studies and the University of Pennsylvania Law School for his legal education. He holds a Juris Doctor degree.
A Doctor of Humane Letters degree was bestowed upon him by Widener University on May 26, 2016, a Doctor of Humane Letters degree was bestowed upon him by Delaware Valley College on May 19, 2018, and a Doctor of Science degree will be bestowed upon him by University of the Sciences on May 20, 2020. All of these honorary degrees were presented to him.
Smerconish was brought up in a home that adhered to the Republican party’s ideology. When Smerconish was in his early teens, he began exchanging letters with Frank L. Rizzo, who served as the Democratic mayor of Philadelphia at the time. The two were destined to cross paths at some point and develop a close bond. But Smerconish’s entry into politics didn’t begin until the spring of 1980 when his father ran in a Republican primary election for a seat in the Pennsylvania state assembly but was ultimately unsuccessful.
During the same year that Smerconish was a senior in high school and registering to vote for the first time, he put in countless hours of labor for his father’s political campaign. Smerconish was enamored with Republican Party politics, having met both Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush in the lead-up to the Pennsylvania Primary. This was despite the fact that Smerconish’s father had lost the election.
Smerconish established the Lehigh University Youth for Reagan/Bush organization in 1980. He attempted to run for the Pennsylvania state legislature while he was a full-time student at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, but he was defeated in the Republican Primary by a margin of 419 votes.
After suffering a defeat in the primary election, Smerconish completed his studies at Penn Law while also pursuing political campaigns virtually full-time. In 1986, he was responsible for the City of Philadelphia in Senator Arlen Specter’s re-election win, and in 1987, Smerconish worked as Rizzo’s Political Director in Rizzo’s lost quest to re-take City Hall as a Republican.
In 1986, he was responsible for the City of Philadelphia in Senator Arlen Specter’s re-election win. Following his graduation from Penn Law, he and his brother Wally established a title insurance agency. At the age of 29, he was appointed by the administration of President George H.W. Bush to serve as the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Regional Administrator for Philadelphia Region III under Secretary Jack Kemp. This region includes Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia.
Following Bill Clinton’s victory over George H.W. Bush in the presidential election of 1992, Smerconish’s time serving in the Department of Housing and Urban Development came to an end. In 1993, Smerconish began what would become a decade of practicing law with the famed trial attorney James E. Beasley, who would become the benefactor and eponym of the Temple University Beasley School of Law. Smerconish’s time spent with Beasley would eventually lead to the establishment of the Beasley School of Law at Temple University.
While working for HUD, Smerconish first made the acquaintance of Beasley when he sought the latter’s legal opinion about a potential defamation action against Steve Lopez, who was working at the time as a columnist for The Philadelphia Inquirer. Beasley became famous for his unprecedented success in defamation cases brought against the newspaper. (Smerconish does not appear to have brought any legal action against Lopez.) Smerconish specialized in difficult cases involving sophisticated tort litigation over their ten years of close collaboration with Beasley. When Smerconish attended a legal seminar in 2015 that was hosted by the Pennsylvania Bar Institute, he was asked to write an essay that summarized some of the things he had learned while working for Beasley.
His unique political experiences at a young age (working for Vice President Bush, unsuccessfully running for the state legislature, running campaigns for Arlen Specter and Frank Rizzo, and ultimately being appointed to a sub-cabinet-level position by President George H.W. Bush) served as the foundation for his work in the media. Smerconish made his first radio appearance in the spring of 1990 as a guest of Brian Tierney, who was serving as a substitute presenter on Philadelphia talk station 96.5 FM WWDB at the time.
This was Smerconish’s first radio performance. As a political analyst for WWDB in the run-up to the mayoral election in Philadelphia in 1991, Smerconish was an active participant. After then, he went from being a visitor to acting as a guest host. In 1993, he launched his own program that aired on Sunday evenings from 8:00 p.m. to midnight. During this period, he continued to work as a lawyer during the day. Smerconish relocated to Saturday and Sunday mornings in 1996, a year after the passing of longtime broadcaster Dominic Quinn.
This change gave him the opportunity to serve as the lead-in for Sid Mark’s Sunday with Sinatra, which was broadcast on Sundays. After that, broadcast entrepreneurs Chuck and Susan Schwartz sold WWDB, and the new owner started selling infomercials that were disguised as programming. Smerconish refused to honor the contract with the new owner. This ultimately led to his relocation to the CBS affiliate WPHT in 1997 (which had originally been known as WCAU AM).
In the course of the following year, he was promoted to drive time in the afternoon while simultaneously continuing his legal career. Only in September 2003, with the dismissal of Don Imus, whose morning drive slot Smerconish took over, did Smerconish go from being a lawyer who was a talk show presenter to being a talk show host who was also a lawyer. Previously, he had been a talk show host who was also a lawyer.
He has been routinely named one of the most important talk show hosts in America by Talkers Magazine, and Radio & Records named him the nation’s 2006 Local Personality of the Year for his work as a broadcaster. He has won many awards for his work as a broadcaster, including these accolades.
He was included on “The Pennsylvania Report Power 75 List” in 2003, which is a compilation of significant personalities in Pennsylvania politics. The National Association of Broadcasters has chosen him to be a finalist for the Marconi Award in the category of Best Network/Syndicated Host for the year 2011. He has been honored with a number of Philadelphia Achievement in Radio awards on multiple occasions, including those for Best Talk Show Host and Best Evening Program. In 2004, Philadelphia Magazine recognized him as not just the most influential citizen in the city, but also as the host of the talk show that was deemed to be the greatest in the city.
Michael Smerconish Profile-
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