Vt. Legislator Investigated for Lewd Acts, Local Media Ignore Party Affiliation

August 18th, 2009 5:01 PM
A candidate for lieutenant governor of the great state of Vermont may be under criminal investigation for lewd acts in public.

Oh, and by the way, he’s a Democrat.

One might miss that fact by reading the NBC affiliate’s report too quickly – the party affiliation of state Senator Ed Flanagan is buried in the tenth paragraph.  One might argue that noting the party affiliation of Vermont politicians is somewhat redundant; however, one must also recall that Senator Bernie Sanders is an independent-leaning-socialist and the governor is a Republican.  Another local report completely omits his party affiliation.  

Oddly enough, this is not the first time the esteemed state senator has attracted complaints about this sort of thing:
According to Totten's account, the incident is not the first time YMCA members have complained about Flanagan's behavior. Sources inside the YMCA told Totten of several instances that concerned them, including one incident where Flanagan allegedly was running on a YMCA treadmill wearing only shoes, socks and a watch.
Amazingly, Flanagan offered this non-apology apology for his more recent behavior:
"If I did anything to offend anybody, I'm very sorry," Flanagan told WPTZ.com.
If, indeed.  If a candidate is accused of performing lewd acts in public – to the point where it triggers a criminal investigation – it may be safe to assume that somebody, somewhere, was offended.

More importantly to NewsBusters: If one is going to bother reporting scandalous behavior by politicians – and I think it is safe to say that journalists should – one should be sure to not bury the party affiliation of those accused.