I posted way back in April of 2007 (remember way back then?) about the Times Union bias against Ron Paul. I have to admit that Fox News took the cake on this one by keeping Ron Paul out of their televised debate tonight. That one’s pretty unbelievable. Many have discussed this, but in short, Paul beat Giuliani 10-3 in Iowa and outpolls Fred Thompson in NH, yet somehow Fox News decided he wasn’t worthy.
Getting back to the Times Union, in my April post I compared news coverage in the TU for Ron Paul as compared to Sam Brownback, who was mentioned in 47 stories versus 8 for Dr. Paul.
Well now I can update the numbers for the year 2007 and even for the first week or so of 2008. Note that I’m using my Lexis account for better accuracy than the TU archives.
Ron Paul was mentioned in the Times Union 46 times in 2007. This number is deceptive, as it includes listings for a Ron Paul Meetup in the community calendar. Taking those out brings him down to only 25 mentions. This is the lowest among almost all the presidential candidates, though Duncan Hunter did get fewer mentions.
Going up the scale we see Mike Huckabee with 64 mentions, Fred Thompson (83), and Mitt Romney (151). On the Republican side the most covered were Rudy Giuliani (256) and John McCain (214). On the Democratic side John Edwards (207) was not far behind Giuliani and McCain. Hillary Clinton got more coverage with 231 mentions. The stunner here is Barack Obama, whose name was mentioned no less than 362 times in the Times Union in 2007.
The Ron Paul suppression is not merely an accident. Unlike many major news sources, the Times Union did not cover the November 5th and December 16th money bombs. There’s been no mention of all the activity by Ron Paul supporters in the area, with sign waving events at key locations, etc. These get mentions in other papers like in New Hampshire, but not here.
For 2008 so far, Hillary (9) and Edwards (13) are well behind Obama (21). Huckabee has taken the limelight on the GOP side with 20 mention, just ahead of McCain (19) and Romney (17). Trailing are Giuliani (9) and Thompson (4). Ron Paul actually surged ahead of Thompson with 6 mentions, but that’s not meaningful. None of the Ron Paul mentions have any substance to them, either mentioning that he’ll be in a debate or listing his results in poll numbers.
Perhaps the best example is the AP article describing the ABC debate, where Ron Paul got mentioned as follows:
Former Sen. Fred Thompson, former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Texas Rep. Ron Paul also shared the stage, but they were largely eclipsed for significant portions of the 90-minute debate as Romney, McCain and Huckabee struggled for advantage.
Funny. I watched the debate and I thought Ron Paul stood out (for better or worse) in stating very different positions than the other Republicans. When he did so they attacked him and a couple of times could be seen laughing at him. This was downright disrespectful and adolescent, but maybe that’s what wins elections.
The Times Union apparently agrees with Fox News and its biases, as it did not cover the decision to keep Ron Paul out of the debate. Again, this is something that has been covered by a quite a few national media sources like the NY Times and LA Times. I’m not letting those others off the hook by any stretch though. When I was out there last week the LA Times ran a section with photos of the candidates on the trail, with a little “human interest” side of their stories. Ron Paul was not included in the section, though Fred Thompson was.
Most people watching think Thompson is about out of the race, with little money and not much success in polls or otherwise. At least Ron Paul has the money to go forward. But I guess Ron Paul isn’t as good at using cliches like “The bottom line is ….”
And did anyone notice when Mitt Romney described Pakistan as a moderate government in the debate? I was not impressed with that comment. Despite that, Romney might actually be my second choice. Of all the candidates on both sides, he’s most likely to govern from the middle instead of polarizing everything.
But getting back to the point, Rudy Giuliani was mentioned more than 10 times as often as Ron Paul in the Times Union in 2007. Results in Iowa? Ron Paul got 10% and Rudy got 3%. The New York Times has had a number of substantial articles covering Ron Paul. The Times Union sometimes runs articles from the New York Times, but has had literally no
Look. The guy’s now in double digits. He’s raising more money than any other GOP candidate, and apparently more in the 4th quarter than any other candidate. He was just behind McCain and Thompson in Iowa and he’s crushing Thompson in the polls in NH. When is the Times Union going to cover Ron Paul?
Maybe if he wins the GOP nomination. Maybe.