Sunday, November 9, 2008

Ombudsman Concludes that the Washington Post Was In the Tank!


After the public began turning against the Iraq War, the New York Times and the Washington Post both conceded that they were literally and figuratively in the tank with Bush. The newspapers admitting either failing to publish anti-war stories or refusing to place them on their front pages. They also rushed to publish pro-war stories without confirming the accuracy of the content.

Today, Deborah Howell, the Washington Post Ombudsman, released a report (which remarkably concluded the night of the election) that shows that the Washington Post tilted towards Obama in its coverage. The results confirm opinion polling data and a study by the Pew Center which show that voters found the election coverage biased and that the content of media coverage heavily favored Obama. Here is a slice of the article:

The op-ed page ran far more laudatory opinion pieces on Obama, 32, than on Sen.
John McCain, 13. There were far more negative pieces (58) about McCain than
there were about Obama (32), and Obama got the editorial board's endorsement.
The Post has several conservative columnists, but not all were gung-ho about
McCain.

Stories and photos about Obama in the news pages outnumbered
those devoted to McCain. Post reporters, photographers and editors -- like most
of the national news media -- found the candidacy of Obama, the first African
American major-party nominee, more newsworthy and historic. Journalists love the
new; McCain, 25 years older than Obama, was already well known and had more
scars from his longer career in politics...

One gaping hole in coverage involved Joe Biden, Obama's running mate. When Gov. Sarah Palin was nominated for vice president, reporters were booking the next flight to Alaska. Some readers thought The Post went over Palin with a fine-tooth comb and neglected Biden. They are right; it was a serious omission. However, I do not agree with those readers who thought The Post did only hatchet jobs on her. There were several good stories on her, the best on page 1 by Sally Jenkins on how Palin
grew up in Alaska.
Related Reading on Dissenting Justice:

2 Politico.Com Reporters Concede Media Biased, Blame McCain

ABC News Takes on Issue of Media Bias and Concludes: It Exists

Poll: 55% of Voters Believe Media More Biased Than in Past Elections

Washington Post Proclaims That "Sarah Palin Picks Ferraro as Favorite Vice President." Shocking -- Yes. Truthful -- No.

CNN and CBS Release Highly Misleading Polls Regarding VP Debate

New York Times to Hillary Clinton: "Call Off the Dogs"

Another Study Proves That 1+1=2, Or That the Media Love Obama, Hate McCain/Palin, and Who's Biden?

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