Betsy’s Trivia: Detroit Edition

Answer: Detroit Mayor Jerome P. Cavanagh

In June of 1969, Meet the Press moderator Edwin Newman opened a program featuring the Mayor of Detroit, among others, with a prophetic statement: “One of the country’s most difficult and challenging jobs today is that of mayor of a large city.” His words would ring true today as well for the leaders of Motor City, as Detroit filed for bankruptcy this week. Four decades ago, Detroit’s mayor was Jerome P. Cavanagh, who had been in city hall through the huge riots of 1967 and economic difficulties in the years since. He appeared on Meet the Press along with four other city leaders gathered in Pittsburgh for the annual Conference of Mayors. Meet the Press permanent panelist Lawrence Spivak began with a tough question for Cavanagh, asking the mayor “can you solve any of the major problems in your city of Detroit, or are you insolvent?” A clearly pessimistic Cavanagh began by saying ominously that most major cities were “fast going bankrupt” and complained of the federal “enchantment” with funneling money through state governments. You can watch the rest of his diagnosis of Detroit’s financial problems in the 1969 clip below…

Detroit Mayor talks "insolvency" on Meet the Press in 1969 0:59

Betsy Fischer Martin - the Senior Executive Producer of Meet the Press - poses a trivia question on Twitter, @BetsyMTP, about the 65 years of history-making moments and guests on Meet The Press. Check Press Pass for answers and video clips!