Monday, July 21, 2008

John, who?

I want to begin by promising not to talk politics too much before November, because let's face it — by the time the election comes along, the vast majority of Americans aren't going to want to even hear the names Barack Obama or John McCain. I think I speak for a lot of people out there who felt the primaries got very tiresome after a couple months.

Anyway, this post is going to be my first in which I address the election, like it or not. A "new" story has been picked up by some news venues about how the media is seemingly biased against Sen. McCain.

As Sen. Obama travels over to Iraq to see what is going on with the war and Middle East, all of the main news anchors from CBS, NBC, and ABC are meeting him over there. Sen. McCain recently traveled overseas, but interestingly no famous journalists made a point to meet him in any foreign countries for some friendly discussion.

Statistics are starting to show that Sen. Obama is a bit of a media darling these days.

"Every week [between June 9 and July 13], Obama played an important role in more than two-thirds of the stories. For July 7-13, for example, Obama was a significant presence in 77 percent of the stories, while McCain was in 48 percent, the PEJ [Project For Excellence in Journalism] said," according to Yahoo! News.

In addition, The New York Times recently published an editorial written by Sen. Obama, titled "My Plan for Iraq." When Sen. McCain wrote a response to this editorial, the Times op-ed editor, David Shipley, rejected it, saying it could not be published because the Obama writing gave new information, while McCain's did not.

Shipley did say he was open to a new editorial from McCain, with a few edits.

"It would be terrific to have an article from Senator McCain that mirrors Senator Obama's piece. To that end, the article would have to articulate, in concrete terms, how Senator McCain defines victory in Iraq," Shipley was reported saying in The Drudge Report, which also contains Sen. McCain's original piece.

In all honesty, I think anyone can see that the media loves Barack Obama. He's different from your average presidential candidate. He's cool, has a sense of humor, and just seems like a likeable guy. And in the media's defense, I really don't see much that McCain is doing other than town hall meetings, despite the fact that I really would like to see more balanced coverage.

On a side note: If you're looking for good information about where the candidates stand on the issues, check out this website put together by Harvard students. It's very straight-forward and gives a good look at both candidate's histories and goals they would like to achieve in office.