Political Journalism or Pro Wrestling Commentary

I've been picking on The Hotline quite a bit recently, mostly because I love their Hotline on Call blog.  One thing I don't like is the focus on horserace journalism at the expense of clarity.  For instance, there's this post by Reid Wilson:

During today's Sen Rules Cmte markup of Cmte chair Trent Lott's (R-MS) lobbying overhaul bill, Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA) may have helped his re-election chances while not irritating his colleagues too much.

Santorum offered four amendments to the bill, reports CongressDailyPM. Amendments to require senators to disclose with whom they are negotiating future employment deals and to restrict family members of senators from lobbying their relatives passed, but two amendments that would have given the bill some serious teeth -- measures to extend the lobbying moratorium from one year to two years and to require disclosure of flights taken on corporate jets, as well as sharing a portion of the costs of those flights -- failed by voice votes.

Santorum's effort is smart politics. With the current less-than-stellar reputation of lobbyists in DC and a minor buzz about the ethics surrounding both Santorum's and Bob Casey's (D) mortgages, being able to brag about his efforts at "real" lobbying reform in a debate -- even if the Senate fails to act on any of his amendments -- will put some much-needed distance between him and the troubled GOP caucus in DC.

Reid Wilson, are you commentator for pro wrestling or are you a political journalist?  Because pro wrestling commenters create drama around meaningless posturing, whereas political journalists explain context, history, and substance.  And I can't tell which of these you are doing here.

I guess it's just a blog post.  Still though...

Tags: Bob Casey, Hotline, Media, Rick Santorum (all tags)



Can't Trust 'Em

I guess all the B.S. journalists who slam bloggers all the time are going to become bloggers, fuck it up, then say "See, I toldja! Bloggers can't be trusted."

Then they'll go back to what they do best: "reporting".

I notice this Reid guy doesn't link to the facts that would support his analysis, as all good bloggers do.

Casey pledged to release his mortgage details. That makes Reid's analysis worthless. Maybe that's why he didn't link to anything.

by zappatero 2006-02-28 02:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Political Journalism or Pro Wrestling Commenta

He doesn't like comments either. Mine wasn't posted. Maybe he's doing some "reporting".

by zappatero 2006-03-01 03:36AM | 0 recs

Ofcourse Bob Casey's mortgage is a regular, run of the mill 30yr mortgage while Santorum's 7yr balloon mortgage is a sweatheart deal that Santorum otherwise wouldn't qualify for.

An often mised point is, however, if I were I were running for office, I damn sure would expect that my banker would support me.  Otherwise, I'd be with one that did.

by ROGNM 2006-03-01 04:00AM | 0 recs
Re: Political Journalism or Pro Wrestling Commenta

I've spent many a moment discussing the horse-race coverage of elections-- especially local elections in NYC (I'm sure its just as bad elsewhere but I don't know about it). That's one of the reasons I was so excited to work on a public policy driven blog rather than a news blog right now.

When the press discussion of a political race starts to sound like the WWE(I love thereference but I've always used the words "Inside Baseball") than the public is not going to be informed about the issues at the core of a race and how specific policy's advocated by candidates will effect them.

This in turn perpetuates the impression that there are no differences between the candidates or between the parties etc. And I know that you know and that you know that I know that that is just not true.

by DMIer 2006-03-01 06:10AM | 0 recs


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