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Home Publications Blogs Beat the Press The Post Invents Independents' Concerns to Advance Its Budget Agenda

The Post Invents Independents' Concerns to Advance Its Budget Agenda

Sunday, 13 February 2011 18:08

The Post wrongly told readers that readers that President Obama is proposing budget cuts to independent voters about whom it says:

"this bloc shares the tea party's alarm over the $14 trillion national debt but takes a more nuanced view of how to achieve fiscal balance."

Actually, polling data have consistently shown that independents place a top priority on job creation and see deficit reduction as a secondary concern. President Obama will likely secure more money for his campaign from funders and more positive coverage from the Washington Post and other news outlets by proposing cuts in the deficit, but the polling data suggest that any gains from independent voters will likely be indirect outcomes from these more obvious gains.

Comments (2)Add Comment
If they persist in their stubborn refusal to fall in line....
written by diesel, February 13, 2011 10:50
Then the poll questions must be rephrased until results prove that independent's wishes are in agreement with the views expressed by the WaPo.
The Crisis in Government and Coverage of Government
written by Ron Alley, February 14, 2011 7:14
This comment, together with the comments below and above, highlight the crisis both in the federal government and in media coverage of the federal government.

The real problem is that the federal government has become a tool of corporate interests.

Members of Congress and the President fight for election in increasingly and obscenely expensive media campaigns. The media reaps a bounty in political ad revenue. The voters are frustrated with the pay-to-play system but they fail to focus their frustrations on the source of their misery. Articles such as the three you criticize intentionally deflect reader scrutiny away from the system that causes their dissatisfaction with government action on jobs, the financial system and healthcare that directly affects their lives.

The truth is that the salaries of journalists are directly tied to their refusal to report on, and perhaps even to ask themselves, the inability of the federal government to enact meaningful legislation affecting corporate interests without inviting lobbyists for those same corporations to participate in drafting the legislation.

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About Beat the Press

Dean Baker is co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington, D.C. He is the author of several books, his latest being The End of Loser Liberalism: Making Markets Progressive. Read more about Dean.