The Boston Globe’s lovefest over Niki Tsongas’s candidacy continued today with Adrian Walker’s column gushing all about how she’s “finally ready” to run for an elected office in her own right, seeking to carry on the legacy of her late husband, Sen. Paul Tsongas. It’s a great and touching story. Except we’ve heard it already, many many times.
What of the other candidates and their stories? The Globe, the Boston Herald, and other mainstream news outlets have been so fixated on Tsongas that the other candidates have been largely relegated to political footnotes or “also-runnings”. The Lowell Sun can’t really get past the coming Clash of the Lowell Titans, the 12-round bout between Tsongas and city Councilor Eileen Donoghue. Middlesex County Sheriff Jim DiPaola got some ink in the Sun, but only after declaring “Lowell is the center of the universe. And you can quote me on that” in the 3/4/07 edition of that paper.
So media coverage thus far has boiled down to sentimentality and dynasty, as well as local interest. How long is that going to last? How much more of the Tsongas legacy, or the Lowell Battle Royale, or Donoghue’s party membership, etc, before the press actually starts looking at experience, positions, and qualifications?
I’m certainly not bashing Lowell or the candidates. The press simply isn’t fulfilling its duty to provide full and fair information on who’s running and on real issues. Heck, we haven’t heard squat about the GOP.
Where are the print and TV clips of the Republicans? Where are the stories about Jamie Eldridge’s legislative record, his 100% labor rating, and his Clean Elections history? Where’s Feingold’s record and his positions? What has O’Brien done to qualify himself? What do they all stand for and what would they do if elected? How much are their campaigns raising? And on, and on, and on…
Do the blogs have to do the mainstream media’s work for them? I may have answered my own question.