PAT THE WATCHDOG
Sixty members of Congress hold assets in 19 major news or media organizations “that are supposed to be their watchdogs,” says a new investigation by the Center for Responsive Politics. Some lawmakers have investments worth a minimum of $100,000, with Sen. John F. Kerry being the kingpin. The Massachusetts Democrat has holdings in multiple companies, including a significant investment in News Corp., which owns Fox News.
But wait. Rep. Anthony D. Weiner owns assets in the New York Times, which has reported daily on the New York Democrat’s endless tweeting scandal. Though the paper has not shown its support for Mr. Weiner, his interest in media investments “should be questioned,” says Kevin Smith, chairman of the ethics committee for the Society of Professional Journalists.
“If congressmen are investing in the New York Times, does that filter into the newsroom? What happens is that it does raise red flags,” Mr. Smith adds. start now. We’re running a different kind of campaign. We don’t take money from Washington lobbyists or special-interest PACs — we never have, and we never will. If you make a donation today, you’ll be automatically entered for a chance to be one of the four supporters to sit down with me for dinner. Please donate $5 or more today. We’ll pay for your flight and the dinner —all you need to bring is your story and your ideas about how we can continue to make this a better country for all Americans.”
— New fundraising message from President Obama, paid for by Obama for America.
a duke, perhaps. Indeed, Rep. Anthony D. Weiner dominated recent news coverage, even knocking the economy off press radar. The New York Democrat’s dubious saga accounted for 17 percent of coverage measured by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism, with the economy snagging 11 percent. But wait. That only makes Weinergate “the fourth-most covered scandal involving elected officials,” the numbers reveal.
“The biggest political scandal of the last 41/2 years was former Illinois Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich’s corruption case (28 percent of coverage), also known as ‘Blagogate,’ in which he allegedly tried to sell President Obama’s former Senate seat,” says Pew analyst Mark Jurkowitz.