In case you missed it, Jim Geraghty at Campaign Spot from NRO has two great posts today on the governor’s race.
First, Geraghty calls the editorial on McDonnell’s thesis a “sigh of relief” from the Washington Post.
Earlier this year, their endorsement of Deeds in the Democratic primary boosted the Democrat’s chances at winning the June primary. Ironically, just a few days later, when Deeds had a bump in the polls, giving him the lead over McDonnell, the Post stated:
“Democrats in turn will try to depict former attorney general Robert F. McDonnell, the Republican nominee, as a right-wing zealot and Pat Robertson protégé. In fact, both candidates are serious public servants with long records that deserve more careful examination … Mr. McDonnell’s tenure as attorney general, by most accounts, has been professional and not overtly ideological.”
Clearly the Post was content that Deeds had the lead and saw no need to go negative at the time.
But now that their guy is down 15, they quickly changed their tune:
“Bob McDonnell … would make a divisive, disruptive and partisan governor — a sharp departure from the tradition of generally pragmatic executives who have helped make Virginia one of the better-managed states in the union.”
The Post put their credibility on the line behind a candidate by touting his plans on transportation, and then learned that he didn’t actually have a plan to deal with transportation. The revelation was thoroughly embarrassing, leaving the editors with a need for a new reason to justify their inevitable endorsement of the Democrat in autumn.
Thus, the “20-year-old thesis” story.
Second, WaPO editorialists stated that ““Virginians deserve specific answers about where the thinking of [McDonnell’s] early middle age has shifted, and where it remains consistent.” Unfortunately, they didn’t bother to attend the nearly 90 minute conference call that most of Virginia’s media did dial in to – including the WaPO News Department! Geraghty goes on to list some choice cuts from media from across the Commonwealth and the nation on this candid conversation with McDonnell.
It’s unfortunate, but this is yet another example of why main stream media is losing credibility.
Then there’s this from Jeff Schapiro of the Richmond Times-Dispatch. He tweeted:
RTDSchapiro #vagov McD trying to change subject? Today talks up education; tomorrow, opposition to card-check.
To which our own Brian Kirwin so aptly replied:
BrianKirwin @RTDSchapiro McDonnell talking about issues isn’t changing subjects. Deeds doing so would be.
The bottom line is this is a manufactured story by the newspaper media. It’s already off most of the TV stations and has probably been relegated to just negative commercials the last week of the campaign. The only loser here is legacy newspapers who continue to plummet in readers and relevance.
Also check out Riley’s post at Virginia Virtucon and this post at Write Side: “You can’t expect the Washington Post to still believe something they wrote…eleven weeks ago “