Media Includes Party Label... for Republicans

July 29th, 2008 2:43 PM

Does the media treat Democrats and Republicans differently when stories of their various peccadillos reach the Press? Well, in actuality, the question is essentially a moot point. There are stories today on the NewsBusters front page testifying to said bias. However, in Yahoo! News' choice of front-page stories today, we can see yet another example of this bias. It seems that Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska has been indicted on seven counts of making false statements. And where did Associated Press writer Lara Jakes Jordan place the senator's political affiliation? in the very first paragraph, of course. According to the story,

Sen. Ted Stevens, the longest-serving Republican senator and a figure in Alaska politics since before statehood, was indicted Tuesday on seven counts of failing to disclose thousands of dollars in services he received from a company that helped renovate his home.

Of course, this appears to be insufficient for Jordan. She goes on to tar Stevens' fellow Alaskan representative with the same brush, writing,

The investigation has upended Alaska state politics and cast scrutiny on Stevens — who is running for re-election this year — and on his congressional colleague, Rep. Don Young of Alaska, who is also under investigation.

Hmmm. When Congressman William Jefferson of Louisiana was caught with bushels of money stuffed in a freezer, I do not recall Jordan or anyone else writing about the negative prospects for Jefferson's fellow congressmen- some of whom were also under investigation. And I certainly do not recall that the Associated Press was particularly interested in following lobbyist Tony Rezko's money trail when it appeared to be getting close to Obama. I have no sympathy for Stevens. if he did what he is accused of, he deserves to pay the price. It is things like this that dampen American enthusiasm for politicians. However, I don't recall a similar hue and cry from the AP about serial defaulter Laura Richardson and her sweetheart deal, nor any interest in following the sweetheart deals for California Senator Dianne Feinstein's husband. If only the Associated Press was as industrious in following up cases like this as they are when the target has an 'R' after his or her name. but that of course would require both objectivity and professionalism- something the AP has proven time and again that they sadly lack. Cross-posted on StoneHeads.