Fails to Mention Governor Blagojevich’s Party Affiliation

December 9th, 2008 11:17 AM

CNN Donkey graphicUpdated below: now noting Blago's Democratic affiliation

An unsigned article on Tuesday which broke the news that Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich had been arrested by federal authorities omitted his Democratic party affiliation. Both Blagojevich and his chief of staff John Harris face conspiracy and bribery charges related to the appointment of Barack Obama’s successor to his Senate seat.

The article did describe the accusations against the Illinois governor and his aide in detail. Among other things, Blagojevich is accused of trying to obtain “a substantial salary for himself at a either a non-profit foundation or an organization affiliated with labor unions; placing his wife on paid corporate boards where he speculated she might garner as much as $150,000 a year; promises of campaign funds -- including cash up front; [and] a Cabinet post or ambassadorship for himself.”

The unnamed author also quoted from U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, who described the situation: “The breadth of corruption laid out in these charges is staggering.”

A four-sentence-long biography of the chief executive came near the end of the article: “Blagojevich, who turns 52 on Wednesday, is in his second four-year term as Illinois governor. His term ends in January 2011. Before being elected governor, he served as a U.S. congressman for Illinois' 5th district from 1997 until 2003, according to his online biography. He and his wife, Patti, have two daughters.”

Update (Ken Shepherd | 13:05 EST): now reporting the Democratic affiliation of the Illinois governor in the teaser blurb on its front page (see screencap below).