As I argued yesterday, the Washington Post is already at work with its spin operation to tar Virginia Republican gubernatorial contender Ken Cuccinelli as a right-wing radical in advance of the 2013 race. The spin operation continued apace, today on the front page of the paper's Metro section, where Richmond correspondent Laura Vozzella described for readers how Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling concluded that "the path to GOP nomination looked too steep" to venture.
In her 19-paragraph story November 30 story, Vozzella hailed Bolling as the "state's multi-tasker in chief" who "has been juggling the part-time job of Virginia lieutenant governor with running for governor and working as a private insurance man." But alas, Bolling, "who shares many of [Attorney General Ken] Cuccinelli's conservative views but has a more conciliatory style" was no match for the attorney general's forces, who "pulled off something of a coup" when they "[took] control of the Republican State Central Committee."
The same newspaper that succeeded in felling Sen. George Allen (R-Va.) with its constant drumbeat of the "macaca" kerfuffle and which tried but failed to scuttle Bob McDonnell's 2009 run for Virginia governor with Thesisgate is ginning up its spin operation in service of the Democrats once again, looking forward 11 months into the future with the 2013 gubernatorial election in the Old Dominion.
Witness the November 29 front-pager by Errin Haines and Laura Vozzella entitled "Choice for governor of Va. may be stark." Right off the bat, we have bias by labeling which casts the Republican as an ideologue and the Democrat as a pragmatist.
As we've noted here at NewsBusters, the Washington Post's Laura Vozzella has done her level best to attack Virginia's new strict abortion clinic regulations. Today was no exception as the Post staffer jumped on the chance to cast a Democrat-appointed health official's resignation in protest of the new regs as a move that has "provoked an outcry among the medical community." However the doctor that Vozzella quoted to represent the entire medical professional in the Old Line State is a Democratic donor whose primary place of medical practice is a Planned Parenthood clinic in Richmond.
In her October 19 front-pager "Virginia health official resigns: Abortion clinic rules cited," Vozzella noted how "Virginia's health commissioner" Karen Remley -- a 2008 appointee of then-Gov. Tim Kaine who was retained by Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) -- "abruptly stepped down Thursday over new regulations requiring abortion facilities to meet strict, hospital-style building standards that many clinics contend they cannot afford." Later in her story, Vozzella turned to one Wendy Klein, whom she simply told readers was "an internist and retired Virginia Commonwealth University medical professor who has spoken against the building rules."
July 1 is traditionally the day when many new state laws take effect, and every year on or about that date, the Washington Post makes sure to inform its readers of some new laws hitting the books in Maryland and Virginia. This year, Marylanders are seeing tax increases, with residents of Montgomery County -- a significant portion of the Post's subscriber base -- disproportionately affected.
Yet in reporting on "A slew of new laws for Md., Va.," Post staffers Laura Vozzella and John Wagner buried infomation about the Old Line State's tax hikes. The first mention came in paragraph 4 out of the article's 34 paragraphs. What's more, Vozzella and Wagner dealt with Virginia's new laws first, meaning that more in-depth explanation of Maryland's tax increases only came 24 paragraphs into the article.
When the Virginia General Assembly was debating a new voter ID law, the Washington Post did its level best to paint the measure as a vote suppressing measure that was akin to "Jim Crow" laws. The Post's editorial board also weighed in by charging that making the voter ID laws stricter was evidence of "institutional racism" in state government.
But now that the debate is over and the bill is likely to be signed by Gov. Bob McDonnell (R), the Post's Richmond correspondents Laura Vozzella and Anita Kumar today admitted that, well, the legislation is fairly lax compared with stricter legislation that absolutely requires photo IDs in other states:
In a 37-paragraph front-page article today, Washington Post correspondents Laura Vozzella and Anita Kumar detailed how, as the "invasiveness" of an ultrasound requirement in an abortion regulation bill "emerged" that "enthusiasm waned."
Vozzella and Kumar examined how pro-choice activists ginned up protests via social media and how liberal-leaning comedians on Saturday Night Live and Comedy Central mocked the legislation. Yet not once in the entire story did Kumar and Vozzella note that abortionists in the Old Dominion who are affiliated with Planned Parenthood already do ultrasounds prior to conducting abortions. Despite discussing the ongoing controversy on MSNBC yesterday, Kumar also failed to mention the fact for that network's audience.
Updated at bottom of post | Virginia Republicans proposing voter ID laws in the state's General Assembly are akin to racist Jim Crow poll workers, lynch mobs, and even Josef Stalin. Those comparisons were all made in the first seven paragraphs of Laura Vozzella's February 4 Metro section front page article, "Voter ID fight heats up in Va."*
Vozzella, who previously has complained about Virginia GOP legislators' "slew of conservative bills" front-loaded her Saturday article with the overwrought rhetoric, which she, of course, failed to dismiss as overheated rhetoric:
"Virginia Republicans push slew of conservative bills," shrieks the WashingtonPost.com headline for staff writer Laura Vozzella's January 23 article. Print edition editors opted for the decidedly more neutral-toned headline, "Virginia GOP pushes ambitious agenda," for the January 23 Metro section front-page article.
Vozzella kicked off her article by painting the GOP state legislators are rabble-rousing troublemakers disregarding the sage counsel of the state's Republican governor to tone it down: