The Mystery of the Disappearing Washington Post Poll

As I reported here yesterday, a Washington Post/ABC News poll suggesting that all of the attention on antiwar activist Cindy Sheehan has had absolutely no effect on America’s views on Iraq appeared to be buried by the Post’s editors.  Well, this observation not only panned out, but became even more curious when the story hit this morning’s print edition with a completely different headline, and a thoroughly different focus.  And, it appears that the Post has eliminated the story originally posted at its website yesterday at 7 AM eastern time.

As such, an article that began thusly yesterday:

Slight Majority Say Bush Should Meet With Sheehan

Survey Suggests Mother's Actions Have Little Impact on War Views

By Richard Morin

Washington Post Staff Writer

Tuesday, August 30, 2005; 7:00 AM

Slightly more than half of the country says President Bush should meet with Cindy Sheehan, the mother of a soldier killed last year in Iraq, who is leading a protest against the war outside Bush's ranch in Crawford, Tex., according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

…has mysteriously turned into this today:

President's Poll Rating Falls to a New Low

In Post-ABC Survey, 53 Percent of Respondents Say They Disapprove of Bush

By Richard Morin and Dan Balz

Washington Post Staff Writers
Wednesday, August 31, 2005; Page A06

Rising gas prices and ongoing bloodshed in Iraq continue to take their toll on President Bush, whose standing with the public has sunk to an all-time low, according to the latest Washington Post-ABC News poll.

Fascinating.  Why do you think the focus changed from Cindy Sheehan having no effect on American views on the war in Iraq to America’s opinion of the President?  Moreover, in today’s print edition of this story, the part about Sheehan gets dropped to a very minor aspect of the article on the second page in the final paragraphs.  Why is that?

Finally, the hyperlink that used to take you to the web article yesterday now takes you to today’s print version.  In fact, it is still showing yesterday’s date:

And, if you do a Google search for yesterday’s headline, the link sends you to today’s print edition version not yesterday’s web story:

Slight Majority Say Bush Should Meet With Sheehan

As such, if one wanted to retrieve yesterday’s article that was primarily about the Cindy Sheehan results, it appears that you can’t. 

Talk about burying a story:  In this instance, the Post appears to have done a Tony Soprano on it!

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Noel Sheppard's picture