What Democratic Talking Points?

It is not completely uncommon for MSM journalists to plagiarize the work of others. But please, don't plagiarize from reports out of the Democratic Policy Committee. That's just tacky on top of biased.

We here at The Daily Iowan recently learned that the July 6 column "Minimum wage no-brainer" was largely plagiarized from a report released June 29 by the Democratic Policy Committee. On behalf of The Daily Iowan staff, I sincerely apologize and deeply regret that such a piece appeared in our newspaper.

Per staff policy, the harshest possible action has been taken against this employee, and John Heineman will no longer work for this publication. We performed an investigation of all his previous work since joining the paper in the fall of 2005. This search revealed no prior cases of plagiarism.

We have treated this situation with the utmost caution and deliberation in hopes that never again will a member of our staff perpetrate this breach of professional ethics.

In light of this episode, the DI has begun discussing ways to prevent the recurrence of plagiarism in our pages. Already, Opinions staff writers are now required to submit a file to their editor detailing through what research and from whom they gathered their story's information. We are pursuing ways to prevent plagiarism in our other departments.

Every day we strive to produce fair and accurate stories, and we understand that such an infraction can be damaging to our reputation. We nevertheless hope that this incident will not deter people from continuing to read and trust in The Daily Iowan.

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