We couldn’t help but notice that ProgressNow Colorado has launched its latest fatwa against the Pueblo Chieftain for what are allegedly grievous crimes against journalism.
Three Chieftain executives signed the recall petition against state Sen. Angela Giron (D-Pueblo), which ProgNow’s Amy Runyon-Harms denounced as “clear evidence of an unethical conflict of interest” that gives the newspaper a “major credibility problem reporting on the recall election.”
The Chieftain hit back last week with an editorial entitled, “Unethical? Nope,” which sent Runyon-Harms into another tizzy, prompting her to circulate an online petition demanding the newspaper “disclose their political activities to their readers–now and in the future.”
Now that we know how strongly ProgNow feels about journalistic integrity, we eagerly await its reaction to the revelation that yet another member of the Colorado mainstream media has been hired by Governor John Hickenlooper’s reelection campaign.
Maximillian Potter of 5280: Denver’s Magazine has joined the Hickenlooper communications team for a reported salary of $130,000, following Curtis Hubbard, former editorial-page editor of the Denver Post.
Potter’s hire came after his glowing report on Colorado’s top Democrat, entitled, “The Happy Shrewdness of John Hickenlooper,” much like Hubbard’s departure followed a long line of Post editorials in praise of Hick and a final blast mocking challenger Tom Tancredo.
Here’s an idea: Why not have a reality show in which “unbiased” journalists compete to see who can write the most flattering puff piece about Hickenlooper, and then award the winner a six-figure paycheck? Oh, wait, that’s already happening.
We are counting the days until the bias-sniffing journalism watchdogs at ProgNow denounce the revolving door between Hick HQ and the liberal Denver media. Certainly that’s more outrageous than what’s happening at the Pueblo Chieftain.
First, nobody has accused the Chieftain executives of profiting from the newspaper’s coverage of the recall. We’re reasonably certain that the three Chieftain managers who signed the petition didn’t receive any sort of financial remuneration from the cash-strapped plumbers at Pueblo Freedom and Rights.
Moreover, there are no signs that the Chieftain execs are planning to bolt for jobs with the campaign of Republican George Rivera, who’s running against Giron on the recall ballot.
As Chieftain readers know, the editorial board has been highly critical of the gun-control bills that sparked the recall drive. Even so, the news coverage of the recall election has been evenhanded; witness reporter Peter Roper’s recent online interviews with Giron and Rivera, in which he asks fair-minded questions and then yields the floor to the candidates.
Finally, it should be noted that the standards for newspaper executives are different than those governing reporters and editors. Just ask Denver Post publisher Dean Singleton, who made no secret of his effusive support for President Obama in the last election. And yes, the Post endorsed Mr. Obama both in 2008 and 2012.
What really rankles ProgNow is that the Chieftain isn’t falling in line behind Giron and the state’s Democrat machine. The Chieftain has shown a salutary independence in standing up to the big-money special interests–hello, Mayor Bloomberg–working to contort Colorado into some kind of twisted left-wing nirvana.
For that, the Chieftain can expect to take some heat from the likes of ProgressNow–which has shown once again that it reserves its outrage solely for those who fail to follow the liberal herd.