Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Grimes For Senate

Remember when the Democratic candidate for Senate in Kentucky Alison Lundergran Grimes refused to tell the Louisville Courier-Journal whether she voted for President Obama in 2012? Of course you do. That little “gaffe” sucked up all the media oxygen for about 48 hours, in part because of her action, but more so because moderator for Meet the Press Chuck Todd deemed her failure to answer this question “disqualifying.”[1] Todd feigned surprise and disappointment that his inflammatory comment was quickly turned into a TV ad run by Ms. Grimes’s opponent, Mitch McConnell, and naturally, the subject became fodder for a televised debate between the two, taking precious time away from a discussion of important issues.

Todd quickly tried to dissemble and parse, shocked that a campaign would take the words of NBC’s political director and host of its flagship political show and use that statement in an ad. Todd’s response suggested a level of naiveté unmatched in Washington or a “doth protest too much” posture that was as phony as it was disingenuous. As is de rigueur with these types of idiotic tempests in a tea pot, the media horde moved on, but a funny thing happened that of course got a scintilla of the coverage of this supposed “disqualifying” event. Largely under the radar and squeezed into whatever tiny reporting space is not being dominated by Ebola panic, that same newspaper endorsed Grimes for Senate.

Unlike Chuck Todd and his Beltway media ilk, who focus solely on political tactics and optics, the Courier-Journal’s endorsement is worth reading. They actually took the time to examine each candidate’s positions and offer their opinion on which one of the two would better represent the interests of the people of the Kentucky. I think this is called “journalism,” something that is woefully lacking in “This Town” coverage of politics these days.

Of course, if Mr. Todd is interested in issuing a mea culpa, I would be happy to tune into Meet the Press this Sunday for it, but I am not holding my breath.  

[1]  No word on whether Mr. Todd thinks that Ms. Grimes’s opponent, Senator Mitch McConnell, is similarly disqualified from office because his desire to repeal the Affordable Care Act would result in cutting off health coverage for more than 500,000 Kentuckians who are now covered by the ACA.