With apologies to the creator of the famous evangelical Christian bumper sticker, "Obama said it. The media believe it. And that settles it."
Get a load of the first two grafs from AP's December 15 article, "Obama: Probe shows no contact in Illinois gov scandal.":
President-elect Barack Obama said Monday a review by his own lawyer shows he had no direct contact with Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich about the appointment of a Senate replacement, and transition aides did nothing inappropriate.
Obama pledged to make the review public, but said he decided to hold off because prosecutors asked for a delay and "I don't want to interfere with an ongoing investigation." U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald released a statement confirming the request.
By contrast, back in October when Gov. Sarah Palin (R) released her own report denying impropriety in her firing of Alaska's public safety commissioner, the AP noted that "Palin Pre-Empts State Report, Clears Self in Probe." As e-mail tipster Matt Healy observed in his e-mail:
"Equal coverage would have been something like "Obama Pre-Empts U.S. Attorney's Investigation, Clears Self in Probe".... Two headlines, both from AP, on a campaign releasing their own assessment of their innocence, treated entirely differently.
Of course in this case, it's the Obama transition, not his campaign, but it's clear the AP is loathe to do anything to cast a pall on his coronation apotheosis inauguration.