It’s Academic — Or Is It?

Posted April 21, 2004 at 4:06pm

Every Saturday morning, Washington, D.C.-area high school students face off on the local NBC affiliate. While the cheerleaders, pep bands and screaming fans might lead viewers to believe they had tuned in for a football game, they would actually be catching “It’s Academic,” the world’s longest-running televised quiz show. Now in its 43rd year, the program has a distinguished alumni roster, including New York Democratic Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Charles Schumer, former Maine Gov. Angus King, Washington Post Chairman Donald Graham and the host of ABC’s “This Week,” George Stephanopoulos. (And other Members of Congress who once competed on the show are encouraged to contact the producers at itsacademicquiz@aol.com.)

In recent matches, students were challenged to match quotes to the politically prominent people who uttered them. The students got six right. Can you do better?

1. “If I seem unduly clear to you, you must have misunderstood me.”

2. “Our brave security teams are the front line in this war on terrorism.”

3. “We’ve got a lot of good people; we just have to fine-tune how they operate with one another.”

4. “We’re a country based on merit, built by immigrants of all ethnic backgrounds.”

5. “Fifty percent of a politician’s day is spent reading, watching or … preparing to talk to the media.”

6. “The most expensive peacekeeping mission is a bargain compared to the least expensive war.”

7. “The motivation for politics is very similar to medicine.”

8. “If I have a disagreement with you, I will tell you.”

a. Madeleine Albright, former secretary of State

b. Prince Bandar of Saudi Arabia

c. Michael Bloomberg, mayor of New York

d. Elaine Chao, secretary of Labor

e. Bill Frist (R-Tenn.), Senate Majority Leader

f. Alan Greenspan, chairman, Federal Reserve Board

g. Tom Ridge, secretary of Homeland Security

h. Tim Russert, host of NBC’s “Meet the Press”

Answers: 1) f; 2) b; 3) g; 4) d; 5) h; 6) a; 7) e; 8)c