Dr. Phil Takes on Tom Edison

Four score and seven yards to go.

Yes, that's right, Abraham Lincoln and Brett Favre stand shoulder to shoulder pad among the Greatest Americans in history. Not to mention Tom Hanks and The Wright Brothers, Dr. Phil and Tom Edison, Michael Jackson and Ben Franklin, Madonna and Mark Twain.

They, and 90 others (the Wright brothers count as one, we think), culled from over half a million on line submissions will battle it out for "Greatest American" honors according to cable channel Discovery, which will whittle them down in a seven-hour, summer "event" series beginning June 5. On that premiere episode, the list will be reduced to 25 and another online poll taken.
The winner will be unveiled June 26 at 9 p.m.

In addition to Dr. Phil and Edison, media mavens on the list included Walt Disney, Martha Stewart, Oprah Winfrey, and, somewhat surprisingly, radio pioneer Nikola Tesla.

Following is a list of the 100 top on line vote getters, which alphabetized alphebetized by first names for some reason ("We thought that looking people up by their first name makes the list a little more casual and friendly," said a Discovery spokeswoman). Bios can be found AOL aol.com/greatestamerican and Keyword: Greatest American.

Abraham Lincoln
Albert Einstein
Alexander Hamilton
Alexander Graham Bell
Amelia Earhart
Andrew Carnegie
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Audie Murphy
Babe Ruth
Barack Obama
Barbara Bush
Benjamin Franklin
Bill Clinton
Bill Cosby (William Henry Cosby, Jr.)
Bill Gates
Billy Graham
Bob Hope
Brett Favre
Carl Sagan
Cesar Chavez
Charles Lindbergh
Christopher Reeve
Chuck Yeager
Clint Eastwood
Colin Powell
Condoleezza Rice
Donald Trump
Dwight D. Eisenhower
Eleanor Roosevelt (Anna Eleanor Roosevelt)
Ellen DeGeneres
Elvis Presley
Frank Sinatra
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Frederick Douglass
George H. W. Bush
George W. Bush
George Lucas
George Patton
George Washington
George Washington Carver
Harriet Ross Tubman
Harry Truman
Helen Keller
Henry Ford
Hillary Rodham Clinton
Howard Hughes
Hugh Hefner
Jackie Robinson (Jack Roosevelt Robinson)
Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis
Jesse Owens
Jimmy Carter
Jimmy Stewart
John Edwards
John Glenn
John F. Kennedy
John Wayne
Johnny Carson (John William Carson)
Jonas Edward Salk
Joseph Smith Jr.
Katharine Hepburn
Lance Armstrong
Laura Bush
Lucille Ball
Lyndon B. Johnson
Madonna (Madonna Louise Veronica Ciccone)
Malcolm X (Malcolm Little)
Marilyn Monroe
Mark Twain (Samuel Langhorne Clemens)
Martha Stewart
Martin Luther King Jr.
Maya Angelou
Mel Gibson
Michael Jackson
Michael Jordan
Michael Moore
Muhammad Ali (Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr.)
Neil Alden Armstrong
Nikola Tesla
Oprah Winfrey
Pat Tillman
Dr. Phil McGraw
Ray Charles
Richard Nixon
Robert Kennedy
Ronald Reagan
Rosa Parks
Rudolph W. Giuliani
Rush Limbaugh
Sam Walton
Steve Jobs
Steven Spielberg
Susan B. Anthony
Theodore Roosevelt
Thomas Edison
Thomas Jefferson
Tiger Woods
Tom Cruise
Tom Hanks
Walt Disney
Wrights Brothers (Orville & Wilbur Wright)

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.