Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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August 23, 2008

FOURNIER IS AT IT AGAIN.... The latest piece from Ron Fournier, the AP's Washington bureau chief and the man responsible for directing the wire service's coverage of the presidential campaign, on Joe Biden joining the Democratic ticket, is drawing a fair amount of attention this morning. More importantly, McCain campaign staffers are pushing it fairly aggressively to other reporters, in large part because it mirrors the Republican line with minimal variation.

By choosing Biden, Fournier argues, Barack Obama is showing a "lack of confidence," and is siding with "the status quo."

There are two ways to consider Fournier's piece: substantively and in the broader context.

First, on the substance, Fournier's analysis seems a little lazy. By his logic, any potential running mate shows a "lack of confidence" -- picking Hillary would mean Obama lacked confidence in his ability to win over women voters; picking Bayh would mean Obama lacked confidence in his ability to win over independents and conservative Dems; picking Webb would mean Obama lacked confidence in his ability to win over voters concerned about national security; picking Kaine would mean Obama lacked confidence in his ability to win over voters in the South; etc. For that matter, "the status quo" in Washington has been conservative Republican rule. Biden may be an old pro and a DC insider, but he's anything but "the status quo."

Second, in context, Fournier's objectivity covering the presidential race continues to look shaky. We are, after all, talking about a journalist who, as recently as last year, considered working for the McCain campaign.

Before Ron Fournier returned to The Associated Press in March 2007, the veteran political reporter had another professional suitor: John McCain's presidential campaign.

In October 2006, the McCain team approached Fournier about joining the fledgling operation, according to a source with knowledge of the talks. In the months that followed, said a source, Fournier spoke about the job possibility with members of McCain's inner circle, including political aides Mark Salter, John Weaver and Rick Davis.

We learned not too long ago that Fournier exchanged emails with Karl Rove about Pat Tillman, in which Fournier wrote, "The Lord creates men and women like this all over the world. But only the great and free countries allow them to flourish. Keep up the fight." Fournier was also one of the journalists who, at a gathering of the nation's newspaper editors, extended McCain a box of his favorite donuts ("Oh, yes, with sprinkles!" McCain said).

It's led to a series of AP reports that can, at best, be described as "questionable."

In March, for example, Fournier wrote an item -- whether it was a news article or an opinion piece was unclear -- that said Barack Obama is "bordering on arrogance," "a bit too cocky," and that the senator and his wife "ooze a sense of entitlement." To substantiate the criticism, Fournier pointed to ... not a whole lot. It was basically the Republicans' "uppity" talking point in the form of an AP article.

But much of the AP's coverage has deteriorated since. There was a slam-job on Obama that read like an RNC oppo dump, followed by a scathing, 900-word reprimand of Obama's decision to bypass the public financing system in the general election, filled with errors of fact and judgment.

When Obama unveiled his faith-based plan, the AP got the story backwards. When Obama talked about his Iraq policy on July 3, the AP said he'd "opened the door" to reversing course, even though he hadn't.

The AP's David Espo wrote a hagiographic, 1,200-word piece, praising McCain's "singular brand of combative bipartisanship," which was utterly ridiculous.

The AP pushed the objectivity envelope a little further with a mind-numbing, 1,100-word piece on Obama "being shadowed by giant flip-flops."

The AP flubbed the story on McCain joking about killing Iranians, and then flubbed the story about McCain's promise to eliminate the deficit. It's part of a very discouraging trend for the AP that's been ongoing throughout the campaign.

And then, within hours of Obama announcing his running mate, there's Fournier again, writing up another piece -- whether it's a news article or an opinion piece is, again, unclear -- that the McCain campaign just loves.

Sandy Johnson, the former DC bureau chief of the AP, was asked about Fournier and the bureau when she was forced out as part of a staff shake-up. "I just hope he doesn't destroy it," she said.

The more I see the AP's coverage, the more I think about that quote.

Steve Benen 10:28 AM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (169)

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Comments

The choice of Biden, I think is less of a vote for the "status quo", and more of a continuing of a declaration of political war.

Since Saddleback, Obama has gone on the offensive..I don't think this is a coincidence. I've heard reports that Obama was rather upset with how that went..I suspect that he thought that he and his ideas would get more respect than they were shown.

Biden is by far the best on the attack of all the names on the VP rumored list.

Posted by: Karmakin on August 23, 2008 at 10:37 AM | PERMALINK

Steve,

Great post, and another reason why you have to push to get your McCain flip flops post moved to your new home.
http://www.thecarpetbaggerreport.com/flipflops

Posted by: wvng on August 23, 2008 at 10:38 AM | PERMALINK

You just know he had another piece, headlined "Desperate Obama Swings For Fences", in the event of some more outré choice for VP.

Whatever Obama did, it was going to be wrong.

And Good News For McCain™.

Posted by: Davis X. Machina on August 23, 2008 at 10:44 AM | PERMALINK

i stopped reading them.

Posted by: r on August 23, 2008 at 10:46 AM | PERMALINK

Fournier is a Republican mouthpiece.

But what has bothered me over the past few months is not that Republicans like Fournier are being jeered at for their criticism of Obama, but that fellow Democrats who object to Obama's move to the right are also being jeered at.

Sorry, you can not canonize Obama just yet. He has made some important decisions that I object to over the past few months and drinking the kool-aid is not going to make this go away.

Biden aside, I did not vote for Obama in the primary because I wanted him to vote for the FISA bill, or was against gun control laws, or wanted to expand the death penalty.

All these Obama positions shocked me and made me re-evaluate Obama as the right choice.

I had to ask myself "were these blunders? Or is this how Obama really feels?"

I believe this is what Obama really believes -- which is why I no longer support his candidacy.

Posted by: Dicksknee on August 23, 2008 at 10:47 AM | PERMALINK

Obama can't catch a break. Salon's Joan Walsh treated him similarly during the Democratic Primary. Everything he or his most distant supporters said or did was written up as a loss or liability. The Clintons, Penn, and Ferraro were given a blank check to behave in the most craven manner. Then, after lying, smearing, and dirty politics Clinton and many of her supporters expected Obama to extend an olive branch and help payoff the debt of her mismanaged campaign.

Posted by: Winkandanod on August 23, 2008 at 10:47 AM | PERMALINK

I'm going to vote for Barack Obama, regardless of the fact Joe Biden is a professional weasel. IMHO, this was a very poor choice on Obama's part that does little if anything to advance the cause, and the fact that the news was released in the middle of a weekend night does nothing to disspell that notion.

Posted by: Out & About in The Castro on August 23, 2008 at 10:50 AM | PERMALINK

That is just disgusting. That man should be deeply ashamed of himself. What a cad. What a fraud. Writing and publishing that article in a widely read news service and representing its content as anything other than half-baked opinion contributes to the deadening of the nation's intelligence, and this is to say nothing of the fact that the guy seems to be in the pocket of one of the candidates he's covering. Fournier's lack of professionalism and seriousness are part of the reason this country is lurching it's way towards irrelevance as a polity. I suppose it was foolish of our founders to believe their intelligence and ideals could escape history -- and the crushing vapidity of banalities like Ron Fournier.

Posted by: MrTimbo on August 23, 2008 at 10:57 AM | PERMALINK

Obama does lack confidence right now... he lack the confidence that he and many of his supporters shared that he was going to run away with this election. That confidence seems to be waining. So, they rightly shifted the strategy.

There's nothing wrong with that shift or as a journalist reporting on that shift.

It may be a shock to some of you "progressives" but I suspect the moderate majority of this country will look favorably on this pick.

Posted by: JRS Jr on August 23, 2008 at 10:58 AM | PERMALINK

Fournier is a bad joke and should be treated as such.

Posted by: Cervantes on August 23, 2008 at 11:07 AM | PERMALINK

Fornier is a whore. He is not a journalist. He is not objective, and does not work with truth. He works like all journaliwhores, with truthiness.

Posted by: POed Lib on August 23, 2008 at 11:07 AM | PERMALINK

You may be right JRS Jr that the rest of America may look at this pick differently than us "progressives".

But us "progressives" continue to be frustrated because we believe neither party represents our views. Many of us had hope that Obama might be the answer == but he has worked very hard to alienate us and the Biden pick will be the final straw for many (not me -- his views on the death penalty locked it in -- though the FISA vote may ultimately have been the one that did it).

My views are no longer being represented in the Democratic Party:

I want universal health care and an end to the tyranny of the insurance companies -- that means getting rid of them altogether or forcing them to become non-profits like in Switzerland. Obama will not do this

I want a return to sensible foreign policy where America does not try to defend its multi-national corporations through military intimidation. Obama's Georgia bluster shows that he and McCain share far more in common than Obama supporters would ever admit.

I want a return to the principal that there is a separation between church and state. Obama scares the hell out of me.

Privacy: is there anyone in either party that believes in this basic human right? Obama's FISA vote shows him to be want to expand the power of the presidency and again threatens the rights of Americans to be left alone, and presumed innocent instead of guilty.

The Republicans always pretend to care about their base; Democrats always deny that their base exists.

OK, maybe progressives are not going to be the base of the party anymore. But all I want to know is where do we turn?

Posted by: Dicksknee on August 23, 2008 at 11:12 AM | PERMALINK

Obama continues to demonstrate that he is smarter than his dtractors, most of whom are just stupid bystanders.

He never was a progressive. He has ALWAYS been a sensible centrist. So, the criticism by some like dicksknee that he is not a progressive is correct. He is not a progressive, and never has been. Only stupid and lazy observers think that he changed. He didn't.

For those who "no longer support him", you are supporting McDepends.

Posted by: POed Lib on August 23, 2008 at 11:12 AM | PERMALINK

The choice of VP candidate shows Obama has a lack of confidence ... that he can hold both offices at once. That's it.

Seriously, he had to chose someone. It's just as easy to say that picking Biden shows Obama's confidence that Biden will not highlight Obama's weakness on the experience question or foreign relations. Only a strong, confidant candidate would pick someone with those strengths.

Does Biden make Obama look strong or weak? It's in the eye of the beholder. And we know who Ron Fournier wants to vote for in November.

Posted by: biggerbox on August 23, 2008 at 11:16 AM | PERMALINK

The AP has become a subsidiary of the RNC. Just look at the folks running the service. Too bad, not long ago it was one damn good news service with the highest of ethical standards. Ron Fournier simply reflects the wishes of his managers.

Things won't get any better until newspapers start dropping AP subscriptions for a more professional competitor. Too bad UPI has fallen into such disrepair.

Posted by: on August 23, 2008 at 11:17 AM | PERMALINK

It's getting to the point where "progressive" really means "I'm an unreasonable moron". Politics in this country are a zero-sum game, for the intellectually challenged "progressives" out there. You vote for the D or the R, and that's what you get. You choose the MORE PROGRESSIVE, not the PROGRESSIVE. This is Politics 101 or Kindergarten Politics, and I am shocked that people are stupid enough not to realize this.

We are not going to have single payer right away, much as I would like it. We can get more progressive health care, but cannot get single-payer. NOT GONNA HAPPEN.

Obama will pull us out of Iraq, in 16 months. Not right away, little babies. In 16 months.

Obama is as progressive as we can get at the national level.

Posted by: POed Lib on August 23, 2008 at 11:17 AM | PERMALINK

Fournier needs to be fired. He is an advocate in wire-service clothing. He does not deserve any further mention or reading.

Posted by: Sparko on August 23, 2008 at 11:21 AM | PERMALINK

I don't mind Biden as long as he keeps his foot out of his mouth. He's going to be a great mouthpiece against the scum the Goopers will be slinging.

And dicksknee, if you don't like Obama, think about voting for Barr or Nader. Or write in Ron Paul. McCain is the LAST thing our country needs right now.

Posted by: MsJoanne on August 23, 2008 at 11:25 AM | PERMALINK

This particular article by Fournier may have an anti-Obama spin, but I assure you that most conservatives are very unhappy with the political coverage of the Associated Press in general, and Nedra Pickler in particular.

Truth is, AP is becoming much more opinonated these days, and mostly to the Democrat's advantage.

Posted by: Mitch on August 23, 2008 at 11:31 AM | PERMALINK

Taking over the news media is the only way the Republicans have a chance in the near future.

While I am not crazy about Obama (he has my vote), what I see on tv is a consistent denigration of the man. It is more subtle than what they did to Senator Clinton, but it is still obvious.

Posted by: jen f on August 23, 2008 at 11:36 AM | PERMALINK

I think the selection of Biden may reflect Obama's real intelligence at work. Biden has been a critic of Obama, and real intelligence wants that kind of criticism--not a yes-man--to bounce off of. We already know how Bush couldn't stand real opposition from those close to him, and look where that's gotten us.

Posted by: Hokuto on August 23, 2008 at 11:39 AM | PERMALINK

I actually like some of Biden's foot and mouth disease symptoms. You sort of know where he stands...but at the same time you know he is open to new evidence and can learn.

Fournier should be banished. The one thing Obama does not lack is confidence. In fact he has so much confidence in his own ability (JUDGMENT given the facts) that he is willing to gather people with opposing viewpoints around him to ensure that he DOES get nothing but all the facts ma'am.

Posted by: Evergreen on August 23, 2008 at 11:40 AM | PERMALINK

Mitch, you write:

most conservatives are very unhappy with the political coverage of the Associated Press in general, and Nedra Pickler in particular [...] AP is becoming much more opinonated these days, and mostly to the Democrat's advantage

This was news to me, since I've been very aware of the bias against Obama in the many AP articles Steve linked to above. Certainly Fournier says that what he wants in the AP is more opinion in general, and not of a particular kind, but from where I'm sitting it's looked like a very particular kind indeed: Republican.

But I know I am hardly a neutral observer, so this is a genuine question: do you know of anywhere where there's evidence gathered of the kind of slant that's demonstrated in Steve's links, only in the other direction?

Posted by: professordarkheart on August 23, 2008 at 11:41 AM | PERMALINK

I appreciate that you've stayed on this AP/Fournier story as it unfolds, Steve.

POed Lib is right, dicksknee. It's never been any kind of a secret that Obama's not particularly progressive; many of us have been saying so for years now and have been ignored by people intent on finding something that isn't there. That you insisted on investing him with mythical qualities and now are disappointed is more a reflection of your misreading of the situation than it is of any bait-and-switch on Obama's part.

No one wishes more than I do that we could get a real progressive elected president in this country. It ain't happening right now. Please make your choices accordingly from the real options that are available to you in November.

Posted by: shortstop on August 23, 2008 at 11:48 AM | PERMALINK

I am sure Fournier will write the McCain lacks confidence in his economic policies when he picks Romney...

Don't be fooled people...Obama is fighting against a four legged stool, McCain, the Media, and the Clintons, and stereotypes

if we wins it is going to be a d**n miracle...he is and will be the underdog until Nov 4th

Posted by: justmy2 on August 23, 2008 at 11:49 AM | PERMALINK

Steve, don't buy the line that Fournier doesn't deserve reading or further mention. He is widely read and influential.

Keep calling him out.

Posted by: OkieFromMuskogee on August 23, 2008 at 11:54 AM | PERMALINK

The Propagandazation of "news" continues. When will we get to the point where published or broadcast material requires a truth in labeling statement? "The content of this article/program is the opinion of the author and in no way constitutes unbiased fact."

Posted by: Nukev on August 23, 2008 at 11:56 AM | PERMALINK

God damn Ron Fournier.

Posted by: Dale on August 23, 2008 at 11:58 AM | PERMALINK

You choose the MORE PROGRESSIVE, not the PROGRESSIVE... Obama is as progressive as we can get at the national level. -- POed Lib

Right you are. I'm mostly progressive when it comes to what ought to be; when it comes to what is, this is a conservative country whose greatness is largely the results of a few progressive/liberal episodes in it's history. That's the context American politics works within. Shit has to hit the fan for anything other than conservatism to rule, and then, only for a brief time.

So, the way to achieve progressive/liberal goals is to take advantage of rare opportunities in time -- and this is one. Vote Democrat or vote anti-Republican, but don't think we're going to achieve some progressive/liberal utopia in anything other than an evolutionary timeline.

Posted by: beep52 on August 23, 2008 at 12:00 PM | PERMALINK

Mitch, please.

Nedra Pickler is the second worst offender guilty of conservative bias behind Fournier.

Just keep repeating 'liberal bias' to yourself, though. Maybe you'll will it into existence.

Posted by: doubtful on August 23, 2008 at 12:01 PM | PERMALINK

There seem to be a new wing of the Democratic Party: the conformist wing.

The platform is the following:
• Anyone who criticizes the leader is a troll or an idiot
• Never criticize the leader: they know what they are doing, and although no one can understand what the hell they are doing, they are by definition doing the right thing
• Lost elections are stolen, not the result of stupid decisions like "I'm John Kerry reporting for duty", or reversing primary positions in the general and thereby alienating the same voters who originally supported you.
• Always check the leader's web site to know what position to take -- it might have changed. Quickly forget what your original position was -- it might cause a headache
• When searching for the enemy always look to your left.
• Never actually expect the leader to do what they say they will -- it's "unrealistic". Expect nothing, and never be disappointed. That is for trolls and "progressives".

Posted by: Dicksknee on August 23, 2008 at 12:04 PM | PERMALINK

Did I mention how much I hate driving in Miami where every road has 4 route numbers and/or names? It's a conspiracy of unchecked stupidity, although the weather is fantastic.

Posted by: beep52 on August 23, 2008 at 12:05 PM | PERMALINK

I am a progressive. I am not an idiot.

There are two types of Democrats. Morons and Progressives.

Progressives:

1) support the leader during the election, because we are not morons like pretend progressives.
2) value WINNING A FUCKING ELECTION, NOT MAKING A POINT OR WINNING AN ARGUMENT. I want to WIN THE FUCKING ELECTION, NOT THE LEADERSHIP OF THE LOCAL WING OF THE LEFT-WING wackos club.
3) did I mention that I want to win the election?
4) understand the electorate, not the Wobbly bill of rights.

As a progressive, I do not want to sit out the next 4 years whining and bitching and moaning like the "progressives". Real progressives win elections. Fake progressives are good at bitching, moaning and whining.

Posted by: POed Lib on August 23, 2008 at 12:10 PM | PERMALINK

How do you hold the Associated Press accountable?

Obviously if a certain newspaper publishes trash like this, I can call up their advertisers and let them know that I don't patronize pro-Republican companies. But what about the AP? Their customers are the papers themselves, right? So it seems like I'd need to boycott newspapers, and don't the large majority of them take AP stories?

Maybe I should just target the papers that are passing along the Fournier claptrap.

Posted by: Equal Opportunity Cynic on August 23, 2008 at 12:22 PM | PERMALINK

Fournier missed the most salient point: Biden is not an ex-POW. Did you know McCain is an ex-POW?

Posted by: ericmiami on August 23, 2008 at 12:24 PM | PERMALINK

Wow with progressives like POedLib, who needs Republicans. Save your venom for the other side dude.

Posted by: Dale on August 23, 2008 at 12:30 PM | PERMALINK

One final test for the difference between an actual progressive like myself and a fake progressive like dicksknee.

Real progressives want to win elections. Our motto is "just win, baby"

Fake progressive want to score points. Their motto is "Ralph Nader is right, and this is what he says."

Real progressives are realistic. They will take what they can get. Just win, baby.

Fake progressives don't want to win. They want to score points. Losing is more important to a fake progressive, because you score more points, and you are cleaner and more pure.

Finally, real progressives occassionally shit. Fake progressives do not shit, and they value only politicians who do not shit.

Posted by: POed Lib on August 23, 2008 at 12:32 PM | PERMALINK

On progressivism:
The problem with a lot of the criticism of Obama from the left is that it accuses him of moving right from a place he never was (FISA's a big exception to this). He certainly emphasized the more progressive elements of his positions during a primary, and is doing the opposite now. Duh. But the reason he's a better choice than just "the lesser of two evils" is that his flexibility on positions isn't just a willingness to betray his ideals; it's evidence of the fact that ideals are actually less important to him than finding workable compromises. That may sound pretty uninspiring, but imagine what would happen if the president actually started promoting bipartisanship in government. Best case scenario: We'd get legislation and foreign policy including a good deal of what progressives want, though not enough, and more for conservatives than we would have liked. We'd get a Congress that could actually accomplish things, and it's a Congress that's going to be Democratic for a while and will only get more so if it actually starts doing its job. The runaway Executive would be checked, and while the Supreme Court wouldn't change much at all, there would be some federal judgeships to fill with decent people. I would argue that this is a lot better than electing a more progressive president who remains mired in Washington's current dysfunction. It's also the ideal setup for the election of a truly progressive president; right now, both parties' failures to show what good government might look like has produced an electorate that isn't willing to back one ideology strongly over another. But a successful presidency that is credited to the Democrats could change that, and make way for real progress. I think we need to show that government can work before any progressive is going to get elected on the promise to make it work primarily in the service of our goals.

Posted by: professordarkheart on August 23, 2008 at 12:37 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, with CB's reporting as my source, I previously wrote the public editor of my local paper (the Atlanta Journal-Constitution) to complain about the AP's coverage of the presidential contest and other areas. She responded by saying that she'd take it up with the paper's national editor and the local AP contact.

I hate to cancel my subscription to my local paper, but if we let our locals know that we're not happy with the AP's news coverage, they might pay closer attention and do some appropriate editing of the AP stories before printing (which they're allowed to do) or switch to the AP's competitors (e.g. the AJC also prints national and international news from the Washington Post and the New York Times).

Anyway...food for thought.

Posted by: CJ on August 23, 2008 at 12:52 PM | PERMALINK

Ron Fournier can take a flying f23k at a sprinkled donut.

Dale

Posted by: thatsjustwhatisaid on August 23, 2008 at 1:03 PM | PERMALINK

The AP is a service that newspapers patronize to save money. They are not the only newswire service or source for news in the world. This whole thing boils down to cost/benefit. If enough readers complain to editorial boards and vote with their wallets using other sources for their news, the cost of using AP as opposed to the benefit of staffing bureaus, sending their own reporters, or using another service like Reuters will force a "market correction."

Posted by: Winkandanod on August 23, 2008 at 1:27 PM | PERMALINK

Who needs the AP when there are so many wise bloggers that offer much superior analysis. The news wires should stick to reporting facts as they happen and leave the analysis to bloggers.

Posted by: rational on August 23, 2008 at 1:29 PM | PERMALINK

Fourni-cate-er is a cheap-trick, roll-in-the-hay tool for the McBush masturbating machine---a leaky condom with batteries not included and a couple of STDs thrown in for good measure. I truly look forward to next year, when an Obama presidency and a strong Dem majority on both sides of the Hill makes that flippant floozie politically obsolete....

Posted by: Steve on August 23, 2008 at 1:37 PM | PERMALINK

This has gone beyond the mere appearance of impropriety or vague allegations of bias. It's time to start asking openly and loudly if Fournier actually accepted his earlier job offer and is currently being paid by McCain's campaign, the RNC or some other organization.

Posted by: RP on August 23, 2008 at 1:37 PM | PERMALINK

"We are, after all, talking about a journalist who, as recently as last year, considered working for the McCain campaign."

You miss the main point. He took the job!

Posted by: ConfirmedCynic on August 23, 2008 at 1:52 PM | PERMALINK

I'd think like to propose a new group called "Uppity Negro Men for Fournier ", or does that show a lack of confidence?

Posted by: Harry R. Sohl on August 23, 2008 at 2:10 PM | PERMALINK

Boy, the percentage of trolls and 'fake' dems on this site is going to take some getting used to. Steve, you are SURE you can't do both gigs?... I thought not.

Posted by: True Dem on August 23, 2008 at 2:28 PM | PERMALINK

Obama is showing a 'lack of confidence' in the current (mis)administration and the status quo of torturing people, relegating the Geneva Convention to 'quaint' status, spying on law-abiding and patriotic American citizens, a government that hides behind secrecy and deceit while it wraps itself in a phoney American flag, and a presidunce that thinks he can ignore the rule of law with signing statements and bogus claims 'executive privilege'. Obama presumes that he can talk to American voters as if they have a brain, and shows no confidence in the Repig logical fallacy of reducing most everything to us vs. them and black/white dichotomies. Fournier, do us all a favor, and write your fake news and Rethug framing of issues on used toilet paper, where it belongs.

Posted by: True Dem on August 23, 2008 at 2:48 PM | PERMALINK

Is CB still CB now that he's here? Will noobs get the reference?

I'm not sure how smart it is for Hon. Sen. McCain to say that he lacks confidence when Hon. Sen. Obama taps someone with comparable experience to Senator McCain who realized the error of his original assessment and became critical of the US adventure in Iraq; while Mr. McCain stubbornly refusedfor yearsto even admit that there might be a problem, then transitioned to a more of the same, times two, position. Hon. Sen. Biden can stand with a sizable, bipartisan group of greybeards who came to realize that Senator Obama was right and they were wrong. Mr. McCain lacked the maturity to admit his judgment had failed him.

Posted by: jhm on August 23, 2008 at 2:57 PM | PERMALINK

Ron Fournier is a pestilence. He showed his true colors with the wet kiss email he sent Karl Rove. Fournier is an absolute disgrace to journalism. The Associated Press is gradually morphing into a cousin of the Fox News Channel.

Posted by: JK on August 23, 2008 at 3:08 PM | PERMALINK

POed Lib wrote:

3) did I mention that I want to win the election?

I agree to a point. But the thing about tacking right, (and I don't think Obama really has tacked right excepting his inexplicable support for the FISA Bush/Cheney/Addington Protection Act,) is that it must gain you more votes than it loses in order for it to work as a tactic for winning elections. And personally I think that the Democratic leadership consistently overestimates the gains to be had by moving to the right.

Now I've been inclined to vote for Obama for a while, but he really made my day when he pointed to Clarence Thomas as a justice that he wouldn't have appointed. Old "no difference" Nader can go to hell as far as I'm concerned for not valuing the Supreme Court issue as much as I do. But that's his right and it makes no more sense for me to get more pissed at someone who voted Nader in 2000 than I get at some centrist who voted for Bush.

Any tactical positioning needs to take the left flank into account as well as the right, or you end up not winning elections.

But I suspect all of this is beside the point in the long run. What I hope Biden brings to the table is some bare-knuckled politics. Bring back Wes Clark. Define Thurston Howell McCain III. Kick the Republicans while they're down. That, my friend, is how you win elections. Seriously.

Posted by: Craig Pennington on August 23, 2008 at 3:51 PM | PERMALINK

I think this article highlights why many Dems are upset with Obama...no matter what he does, NO one was going to be happy.

Let's take Biden for example. Personally, I would have preferred anyone but Hillary, but ultimately, its not like he flipped a coin. He spent months thinking this through. And while many of his so called supporters are bemoaning the pick, ultimately, I think it is the right one. We face major issues on the national security front in the next couple of years with the withdrawal from Iraq, build up of troops in Afghanistan, problems with Iran, and now Russia. Why not pick someone who can bring something to the table in that area, as well as complement your strengths?

And for this whole progressive thing, did I miss something? I think this is exactly what happens when you try to project your beliefs onto someone else. Obama has never been "progressive." So to accuse him of betraying "progressive" ideals is a stretch. As someone pointed out already, he highlighted the areas that he was progressive in during the Dem primary, and now he is highlighting the areas where he is more moderate, or at least willing to make compromises. I guess I'm not as disturbed by this trend as others, because I read his book, where he clearly says that he is not an ideologue, and he is more concerned about solutions than partisanship.

As far as the AP, should we really be surprised? Repubs wail and complain about this love story the media is having with Obama, when the reality is he is receiving more negative coverage than McCain. I tend to read several sources to get a full view of what is going on, because I think everybody has their own ideological slant.

Posted by: TRW on August 23, 2008 at 4:03 PM | PERMALINK

Are Marc Halperin and Ron Fournier the same person? Why are these 40 something media males so angry at Barack Obama? I think these so-called media smartboys kinda thought they had created the Obama superstar by writing about him. They made the mistake of believing they were the creaters of his charisma and his smarts. When they decided they had enough, they started the build him up to bring him down part and it didn't work. So now they are having these jags of doing absolutely stupid stuff with regard to the Obama campaign. Just when they thought they were going to be the big guns in the media, the internet pulled the rug from under them and Obama's smart campaign added insult to injury by proving they were not needed to drive his campaign. Fournier is being a very small man in all the ways that can be applied to his real nasty demeanor toward a candidate for President of the United States. Back at your Fournier!

Posted by: anghiari on August 23, 2008 at 4:11 PM | PERMALINK

AP is a media hound for the Clinton's. They have supported this couple and Ferraro all while taking Rove's advice. AP is really not something that is of value to anyone anymore....sorry..your history

Posted by: nativegirl on August 23, 2008 at 4:15 PM | PERMALINK

The fact that the AP has been hi jacked by neo cons is sad. It occurred to me recently while traveling on Lufthansa to Germany & seeing some real International news, that our news has morphed in to State run propoganda consisting of infotainment & radically slanted opinion. It's happened slowly but seeing it in contrast to what news used to look like here & should still, is completely SHOCKING. The intention must be to destroy the industry & thereby all credibility.
Like Biden said in his speech today "this may be our last chance to turn this Country around".

Posted by: Chapman on August 23, 2008 at 4:22 PM | PERMALINK

Time to send an email to info@ap.org everyone and demand that Ron Fournier be removed.

Posted by: Elaine on August 23, 2008 at 4:25 PM | PERMALINK

I agree that many projected onto Obama without truly educating themselves by reading his books for example. Many of his so called flip flops were articulated in these books. So they were not flip flops. It is also clear in these books that it is not really in him to be deceptive or pandering in a skillful way.

Whatever questionable interactions Obama had in political context of Chicago they do not compare to the very personal sustained schmoozing the McCain family had with Charles Keating.

Posted by: ella street on August 23, 2008 at 4:25 PM | PERMALINK

Why does the AP put up with this? They, more than any other news organization, are supposed to be objective.

Posted by: JimR on August 23, 2008 at 4:32 PM | PERMALINK

When I studied journalism in high school, it was believed that there is a difference between news and opinion. The AP Washington bureau chief clearly has crossed that line. I wish he had not. It clearly undermines any credibility he has to serving the public interest and not just his own.

Posted by: Judy Stevens on August 23, 2008 at 4:35 PM | PERMALINK

Classless AP Takes Cheap Shots at Just-Passed Tony Snow
http://newsbusters.org/blogs/tom-blumer/2008/07/12/classless-ap-takes-cheap-shots-just-passed-snow

AP: 'McCain, Nearly 72, Can Be Fuzzy And Forgetful'

http://newsbusters.org/blogs/michael-m-bates/2008/08/21/ap-mccain-nearly-72-can-be-fuzzy-forgetful

This website has a lot of examples of liberal bias of the Associated Press.

Posted by: mitch on August 23, 2008 at 4:36 PM | PERMALINK

Fournier argues, "By choosing Biden, Barack Obama is showing a "lack of confidence," and is siding with "the status quo."

The netroots are getting just as bad as the MSM in creating their narrative and making all facts fit it. I think Fournier speaks the truth on this one. What's the point of shooting the messanger. Obama has compromised his Change message and his Iraq message by putting at McCain twin on the Democratic ticket. Sad, true, deal with it.

Posted by: party-of-one on August 23, 2008 at 4:36 PM | PERMALINK

Fournier is a whore. He should get a job with Fox News.

Posted by: Robin Ewart on August 23, 2008 at 4:45 PM | PERMALINK

One more objection to Fournier's piece. He writes:

A senior Obama adviser, speaking on condition of anonymity, said his boss has expressed impatience with what he calls a "reverence" inside his campaign for his message of change and new politics. In other words, Obama is willing--even eager--to risk what got him this far if it gets him to the White House.

Can anyone see how what follows "in other words" is in any way related to what precedes it? It should actually read: "in a new and totally unsubstantiated statement I will now make because it's what I already thought." It's a small point, but it stands in for the larger one: when you deceptively label "opinion" as "analysis" as Fournier has, you make a deal with the devil that results in your no longer being able to distinguish between the information you're reporting and the preconceptions through which you filter it. The piece is not just biased; its bias leads it to be, by any journalistic standard, truly bad.

Posted by: professordarkheart on August 23, 2008 at 4:45 PM | PERMALINK

Fournier is a whore. He should get a job with Fox News.

Posted by: Robin Ewart on August 23, 2008 at 4:45 PM | PERMALINK

Is there no such thing as 'journalism' anymore???

Please write directly to the AP to protest this type of partisan interpretation of the facts. America deserves better.

Michael Oreskes, AP Managing Editor, mOreskes@ap.org
Ron Fournier, AP reporter and Washington D.C. Bureau Chief, rfournier@ap.org

Posted by: Elle on August 23, 2008 at 4:48 PM | PERMALINK

Is there no such thing as 'journalism' anymore???

Please write directly to the AP to protest this type of partisan interpretation of the facts. America deserves better.

Michael Oreskes, AP Managing Editor, mOreskes@ap.org
Ron Fournier, AP reporter and Washington D.C. Bureau Chief, rfournier@ap.org

Posted by: Elle on August 23, 2008 at 4:49 PM | PERMALINK

Is there no such thing as 'journalism' anymore???

Please write directly to the AP to protest this type of partisan interpretation of the facts. America deserves better.

Michael Oreskes, AP Managing Editor, mOreskes@ap.org
Ron Fournier, AP reporter and Washington D.C. Bureau Chief, rfournier@ap.org

Posted by: Elle on August 23, 2008 at 4:49 PM | PERMALINK

Fournier is a t*rd. However:

For that matter, "the status quo" in Washington has been conservative Republican rule. Biden may be an old pro and a DC insider, but he's anything but "the status quo."

If "status quo" by definition means conservative Republicans and therefore cannot apply to Democratic pros and insiders, it's a bit odd that Obama continually dissed Hillary as a representative thereof.

Posted by: Swift Loris on August 23, 2008 at 4:55 PM | PERMALINK

Fortunately, it doesn't matter what Fournier thinks. It only matters what the voters think.

If Obama had picked Kaine, he would have been criticized by the Right for the lack of experience in the team. If he had picked Sebelius, he would have been criticized for not picking Clinton. If he had picked Bayh he would have been criticized for picking someone so non-descript. IT DID NOT MATTER WHO OBAMA PICKED. HE WAS GOING TO GET CRITICIZED. The Right goaded him into a overseas trip. Then criticized him when he went.

I hope the American people will see that no matter what Obama does, no matter what his strengths, no matter what his vision, the Right will attempt to throw cold water on it. This is politics as usual and speaks a ton of negatives about Republican strategy.

Posted by: PCL on August 23, 2008 at 4:59 PM | PERMALINK

First Fournier, is phoney ay. A political wannabe hack. Note: I am always suspicious of people who comment more than once their opinion on why they are not voting for a person on a site that is to the contrary. I find it funny, why not go to the right/left site/blog where your dissent will be welcomed and one can wallow as one big happy party on why you as of lately don't support your former choice? I am led to believe, most folks are Republicans trying to sway and Democrats trying to sway in these forums when there are plenty of blogs expressing their views (like-kind) to visit and can feign and comment on their outrage etc. ~ONE HOUSE ONE SPOUSE~ ~TWO HOUSES TWO SPOUSES~ O'BIDEN 08

Posted by: Kay on August 23, 2008 at 5:06 PM | PERMALINK

First Fournier, is phoney ay. A political wannabe hack. Note: I am always suspicious of people who comment more than once their opinion on why they are not voting for a person on a site that is to the contrary. I find it funny, why not go to the right/left site/blog where your dissent will be welcomed and one can wallow as one big happy party on why you as of lately don't support your former choice? I am led to believe, most folks are Republicans trying to sway and Democrats trying to sway in these forums when there are plenty of blogs expressing their views (like-kind) to visit and can feign and comment on their outrage etc. ~ONE HOUSE ONE SPOUSE~ ~TWO HOUSES TWO SPOUSES~ O'BIDEN 08

Posted by: Kay on August 23, 2008 at 5:07 PM | PERMALINK

AP: the new Fox News

Posted by: on August 23, 2008 at 5:08 PM | PERMALINK

I agree with Fournier... Biden is clearly Obama's version of Dick Cheney.

Posted by: WR Burton on August 23, 2008 at 5:10 PM | PERMALINK

When I saw the title of this article I was nervous. Until I got to the part that said he considered working for the McCain Campaign. Its nothing to get worked up over although I'm sure the McCain group will get plenty of mileage out of it with the media.

Posted by: Jeannie V on August 23, 2008 at 5:10 PM | PERMALINK

Fournier is apart of the McCain wolves that are out to defeat Obama. One should realize that these people will fight to the last breath to retain power. It is over--the people will have the last word. You can rest assure of that.

Posted by: Sims on August 23, 2008 at 5:12 PM | PERMALINK

I am going to vote for Obama in November. I do not care about the Polls, The News, The T.V. the Youtubes or what else they want to throw at Obama I am going to be like that old tree at the river of the water, I shall not be moved. I will stick with him till the end.

Posted by: millie on August 23, 2008 at 5:27 PM | PERMALINK

Now we have identified the REAL whiners is the nation...just look to the right. Now matter how they try to spin it they are WHINING,WHINING,WHINING, WHINING! LOL!

Posted by: Moxieme on August 23, 2008 at 5:27 PM | PERMALINK

When I got up this morning to look at my email, on Yahoo.com I was totally shocked to see four AP articles all with negative headlines about Obama-Biden. There was not one positive headline.

About an hour later I went to show my husband because I was so angry about it, but the news had changed to the Olympics (and still no positive article for Obama).

I was really upset with AP for being so pro McCain, but equally upset with Yahoo for such bias on their site. In fact, what's up with that?

Posted by: kali on August 23, 2008 at 5:28 PM | PERMALINK

Ass, sorry, as for Associated Press they have lost all credibility. Joe Biden is perfect and his right to the point attitude makes the Republican's unhappy. Biden is the salt of the earth and knows what the working man and woman is all about. Not that senile McCain unable to remember how many house's, what he voted on, his position on immigration and abortion, and on and on ad nauseum.

Posted by: George on August 23, 2008 at 5:37 PM | PERMALINK

If McCain picks Romney, can we look forward to Ron F***er writing a hit piece on McCain saying McCain's pick shows a lack of confidence in McCain's ability to understand the economy? No, I didn't think so.

Posted by: Susan on August 23, 2008 at 5:44 PM | PERMALINK

If McCain picks Romney, can we look forward to Fournier writing a hit piece on McCain stating that his pick shows his lack of confidence in his ability to understand the economy? Nah, probably not.

Posted by: LilQ on August 23, 2008 at 5:45 PM | PERMALINK

Hey hey hey...how's the water here guys from CBR?

Dicksknee above had an excellent response but to answer "where do we (progressives) go"...well according to the results of a few pew polls we dominate the party...not centrists and not conservative DINOs. On every issue Dicksknee listed above (national health care, privacy, foreign policy not run by corporate lobbyists etc) a majority (65-75%) polled taking a progressive stand so don't be fooled by these centrist (who cannot even define the position of a 'centrist') trying to convince us they are the majority...they aren't. Progressives are. What progressives lack is media power (Olbermann and Maddow our two best public voices so far) and buying power.

Conservatives have pushed the country so far right that any dissent is categorized as leftist. People don't know what term to call themselves as conservatives try to push the idea that they are the majority. But on the issues when polled a majority of the country shows themselves to be progressives (so by technical definition progressives are centrist compared to the far right conservatives and the so called centrists are the old republicans).

Obama is dealing with a far right wing press who defines any attempt to be progressive/centrist as far left wing radical. Think about it...what the hell is far left? You can never be too far right now days. Obama wants to be progressive/centrist but is dealing with a total right wing corporate media and a money party. It's a tight rope he's walking now and Biden has been brought in to bark loudly, hopefully as a distraction while Obama attempts to dismantle the money party leadership.

I support Obama and will vote for him but will never stop calling him out when he falls in with the profiteering power grabbing corporate establishment who demand immunization for their agenda These are not kings or monarchs we elect but representatives and we must keep their ears open to what the people demand. We are the progressives that will restore America's democracy and Obama has jumped in front of our parade...the 65-75% of us who are making ourselves heard..(thanks to the internet). Leftists-smeftists...we are just the majority of Americans...period.

Posted by: bjobotts on August 23, 2008 at 5:47 PM | PERMALINK

To TRW:

Don't know you but you must be reading my mind..totally agree with everything you said. Change will not happen overnight, but we have a chance this time to get change started. If Obama is indeed able to bring the parties together to accomplish issues for all Americans, you will see things change in the kind of people elected. We already see Republicans tying their coattails to Obama and supporting him. This a first step toward a no-party system. That is what I would really like to see, mainly because so many Republicans vote party rather than issues.

Posted by: ILT on August 23, 2008 at 5:52 PM | PERMALINK

To TRW:

Don't know you but you must be reading my mind..totally agree with everything you said. Change will not happen overnight, but we have a chance this time to get change started. If Obama is indeed able to bring the parties together to accomplish issues for all Americans, you will see things change in the kind of people elected. We already see Republicans tying their coattails to Obama and supporting him. This a first step toward a no-party system. That is what I would really like to see, mainly because so many Republicans vote party rather than issues.

Posted by: ILT on August 23, 2008 at 5:52 PM | PERMALINK

'If' this story is true, I would tend to think in the big scheme of things, it's only fair a little bit...

With the AP so liberally biased in general, combined with NBC, MSNBC, ABC, CBS, CNN, etc., a little bias for McCain would only be fair.

Of course, the best thing would be for the MSM to be Professional and to start reporting in a straight & fair manner - NO Bias.

Posted by: BillSanford on August 23, 2008 at 5:53 PM | PERMALINK

Fournier is a disappointment.
There is a serious groin infection known as Fournier's Gangrene. Terrible.

Posted by: M. Tobias on August 23, 2008 at 5:54 PM | PERMALINK

"I support Obama and will vote for him but will never stop calling him out when he falls in with the profiteering power grabbing corporate establishment who demand immunization for their agenda These are not kings or monarchs we elect but representatives and we must keep their ears open to what the people demand. We are the progressives that will restore America's democracy and Obama has jumped in front of our parade...the 65-75% of us who are making ourselves heard..(thanks to the internet). Leftists-smeftists...we are just the majority of Americans...period."

Look, buddy, do whatever you want. BUT WE NEED TO WIN THE ELECTION FIRST. NO PROGRESSIVE IS GONNA WIN THE ELECTION BY CALLING FOR MORE PROGRESSIVISM. We need to sneak in, and then do the progressive thing.

Just win, baby.

Posted by: POed Lib on August 23, 2008 at 5:56 PM | PERMALINK

To TRW:

Don't know you but you must be reading my mind..totally agree with everything you said. Change will not happen overnight, but we have a chance this time to get change started. If Obama is indeed able to bring the parties together to accomplish issues for all Americans, you will see things change in the kind of people elected. We already see Republicans tying their coattails to Obama and supporting him. This a first step toward a no-party system. That is what I would really like to see, mainly because so many Republicans vote party rather than issues.

Posted by: ILT on August 23, 2008 at 5:56 PM | PERMALINK

Why does the AP hate America?

Posted by: TeriM on August 23, 2008 at 6:05 PM | PERMALINK

Some "journalists" will never see anything positive about anything Senator Obama says or does. They will never make or let a positive statement about Senator Obama stand. They have subscribed to the Republican narrative that Senator Obama is not American enough, not like the rest of us, exotic, different, unfamiliar, risky and the list goes on an on. This is the foundation and justification for their smug and uninformed opinions that Senator Obama's judgement is fundamentally unsound. They gleefully attribute all kinds of deficiencies with Senator Obama that they would never associate with any of the other presidential candidates. It is a self-important superiority complex that prevents low-information journalists like Fournier from seeing and reporting the truth. Low-information voters have already damned America with Bush/Cheney. Now it is time for God to damn Ron Fournier, Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh and every other coward who wields a pen or a microphone to spread misinformation stemming from their birthright of malicious ignorance and hate. It is time for human decency and integrity to be returned to American politics and Obama/Biden is the team to bring it.

Posted by: Grace in Orlando on August 23, 2008 at 6:12 PM | PERMALINK

Who says that Ron turned down the job from the McCain campaign?

Posted by: tas on August 23, 2008 at 6:47 PM | PERMALINK

The once proud, dependable and truthful AP is becoming something of a joke. It's sad to see such a cornerstone of journalistic standards and history turn into a partisan mouthpiece.

Posted by: OBXartist on August 23, 2008 at 6:49 PM | PERMALINK

If this coverage were anymore negative, I would swear that this guy is a Republican dressed up like some wise and intelligent press agent. It is amazing what being a member of the the press can do for your mouth...truth as YOU see it.

Posted by: Susannah Lindsay on August 23, 2008 at 6:49 PM | PERMALINK

"...OK, maybe progressives are not going to be the base of the party anymore. But all I want to know is where do we turn?..."
Posted by: Dicksknee

I also question if progressives were ever "the base of the party." Progressives have to give up the stubborn 'all or nothing' attitude and adopt some pragmatism. I'm supporting Obama, not because I idolize this candidate, but because at the end of the day we'll be closer to what is needed than we were at the start.

Posted by: Varecia on August 23, 2008 at 6:50 PM | PERMALINK

Boycott AP. Fournier is nothing but a four-letter like f ck. He's been bought by the 8-house $500 shoe McCain. AP has been bought and therefore news emanating from AP DC is PROPAGANDA FOR MCCAIN.

Posted by: M. Stratas on August 23, 2008 at 6:54 PM | PERMALINK

Please sent your complaints to kcarrol@ap.org and let them know that AP can no longer be trusted and we will spread the word that AP now work for NRC.

Posted by: john on August 23, 2008 at 6:55 PM | PERMALINK

It's not just Fournier, but his new reporter from Alabama, Brett Blackledge.

Former Birmingham News Reporter Discusses Pulitzer

Posted by: Glynn Wilson on August 23, 2008 at 6:57 PM | PERMALINK

The AP is owned by Reverend Sun Myung Moon's very questionable "church", Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity.

Through THOUSANDS of shell organizations and companies, this group has gathered power in our very own Capitol - he even had himself CROWNED in place of JESUS as the head of the Christian church - with the ASSISTANCE OF SOME OF OUR ELECTED OFFICIALS.

So, who to believe?
A former great PRESS SERVICE-now controlled by a group that OPERATES BUSINESSES IN NORTH KOREA and covers both gun running and dealing with their shell corporations....

If you KNOW THE TRUTH - you would NOT GO NEAR AP for anything close to 'the truth, justice, and the American Way.'

You guys in the PRESS know.
Now, LET THE PUBLIC IN ON THIS CRIMINAL ACTIVITY.

Come on - if a little old lady with a google can plot these criminals -

Posted by: mommadona on August 23, 2008 at 6:57 PM | PERMALINK

Shorter Washington Monthly "Waaaaaa, somebody told the truth". Really, you guys are embarrassing yourself.

Posted by: LH on August 23, 2008 at 7:15 PM | PERMALINK

From by Jonathan Singer, Sat Aug 23, 2008 "Contact the Associated Press (updated)... Kathleen Carroll (Fournier's boss) at kcarroll@ap.org or (212) 621-1500. Be POLITE, but be FIRM. Let them know that you don't want to see them serve as stenographers and amplifiers for pure spin by the McCain campaign."

My letter:
Ms. Carroll,

I will forevermore consider AP reporting akin to Fox News unless something is done to restore objectivity regarding the presidential campaign. Perhaps the talented, but partisan, Mr. Fournier could serve somewhere besides Washington, D.C.

Thank you,

Posted by: Paxhope on August 23, 2008 at 7:22 PM | PERMALINK

Anyone who doesn't vote for Obama may as well go ahead and vote for McCain. I don't agree with everything Obama does for sure but my chidren do not deserve what is going to happen to this country if McInsane is elected. I'm sick of people saying they can't support Obama because of a few issues without looking at the bigger picture. Do you f'ing like the way things have gone in the past 8 years, because McInsane is going to do that on steroids. Wake the hell up people.

Posted by: tbsa on August 23, 2008 at 7:27 PM | PERMALINK

AP is already going after Biden. http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5iB0gIetK2UavkimpYfuHTo325W6AD92O8EIG0
I had no idea they were so biased! I thought they were only a conduit for news agencies. And owned by Moon?!

Posted by: g'maw on August 23, 2008 at 7:30 PM | PERMALINK

You have to be kidding. Since when is being smart means hiring or selecting people less qualified than you? I take it this means McCain is going to hire dumb people? Biden is not an average Republican war warrior and oil dog. He is one of the few real politicians left in Washington who works for the people! I take it you misunderstood Obama's change Washington comment. Did you actually thought he meant CHANGE EVERYONE cause they are all CROOKED? Unbelievable!

Posted by: Jane on August 23, 2008 at 7:30 PM | PERMALINK

One House, One Spouse, Obama/Biden 08 (http://www.cafepress.com/politics2go)

Posted by: Nick on August 23, 2008 at 7:45 PM | PERMALINK

I think the answer to 'where do we turn" is 'out of the box that defines ordinary people's proper political place is to vote once and forever hold your peace.'
Elections are clearly the biggest real-world lever we hoi polloi have--but it sure as hell isn't the only one. And an election won't get Ron Fournier fired.
We have to hold our officials' feet to the fire whether they're D's or R's--because elected officials will always try to placate the powerful if they think they can get away with it. And that's if th unpowerful just take it--whether they just ignore it or say things like 'The American Democratic Experiment is Over" in blog comment threads.
We fight. We fight for our principals, fight for our candidates to get them elected, and fight to make them more progressive.

And I'm sorry--despite Obama's FISA vote and Biden's bankruptcy vote, I don't see how anybody can look at what's sitting over there streaming out of Minas Morgul and not do everything within their power to defeat them

Posted by: pbg on August 23, 2008 at 7:47 PM | PERMALINK

Ron Fournier is just another Republican fournier-cator...opening wide to take the latest lying Republican talking point...spewing it out over the airwaves...and then smoking a cigarette afterward.

Posted by: The Oracle on August 23, 2008 at 7:48 PM | PERMALINK

No Presiedent runs the country alone. McCain will need someone to help him to understand the needs of the middle class and that their are thousands of people in this country that do not have health care and that most people don't fly around their cities in private jets.

Posted by: Sims on August 23, 2008 at 7:55 PM | PERMALINK

McCain wont "need someone to help him understand" if he's not elected. Problem solved, and the country in a heck of a lot better shape.

Posted by: Don on August 23, 2008 at 7:58 PM | PERMALINK

Wow! I didn't know that AP was owned by Moon. What a revelation. Now it all makes sense. Moon is the King of America---Obama and Biden would present a threat to his rule and his influence.

Posted by: on August 23, 2008 at 8:09 PM | PERMALINK

The AP is owned by Reverend Sun Myung Moon's very questionable "church", Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity.

Actually that's UP (United Press?) that's now owned by Moon, but the AP might as well be.

Dale

Posted by: thatsjustwhatisaid on August 23, 2008 at 8:26 PM | PERMALINK

Fournier is to journalism what syphilis is to romance.

Posted by: Rapid Eddie on August 23, 2008 at 8:28 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, it's UPI that's owned by Moon. But it should say alot about what's happened to AP that someone like me who isn't exactly a news junkie read the headline of that piece and immediately said "ooh, I bet Ron Fournier wrote this," and was right.

Posted by: C.L. on August 23, 2008 at 8:55 PM | PERMALINK

No matter who Obama picked some wouldn't like him/her and some would. He picked someone who would complement him. Someone who will echo his ideas and has the passion to put them across to the voters. The fact that he is a white man will soothe the ones who don't like that Obama is black. Maybe..

Posted by: Srkdqltr on August 23, 2008 at 9:02 PM | PERMALINK

Wow.. in just a few months Obama went from "too cocky" to showing a "lack of confidence".

This guy should work for FOX, not the AP.

Posted by: TokerTim on August 23, 2008 at 9:18 PM | PERMALINK

OMG If this is all the Benen I'm going to get in a day, and none on weekends, I'm going to have to go into a program for political junkies.

Posted by: CU on August 23, 2008 at 9:24 PM | PERMALINK

Fournier is such a moron and an idiot. Who cares what this loser has to say.

Posted by: BarackDaVote on August 23, 2008 at 9:26 PM | PERMALINK

Weeeeel, Obama's no panacea, harbinger of utopia or whatever, and he WILL NOT be a "progressive's progressive." I surely hope he doesn't help screw the country further, domestically and internationally. Of course he's the best available choice. Same basic sentiments go for Biden (I think). Now me, I'm a left-winger, see. Obama ain't. But I'm absolutely gonna vote for Obama & Co. because, as others have put it more eloquently, you can't do anything unless you're in the White House. Abraham Lincoln only moved to free the slaves when he felt he had enough popular support for it - along with strong Union armies rolling into the Confederacy. Let's hope Obama's cut from the same cloth.

Posted by: Jerkdorf on August 23, 2008 at 9:27 PM | PERMALINK

Does seem that Fournier is indeed working for McCain, as a thinly disguised "mole" in the oft-maligned "liberal" press.

One wonders how McCain has promised to pay him, and how Fournier ever collect when this latest evidence of McCain's shoddy tactics as the "straight talker" becomes better known.

Thanks for this article - I can just skip AP's coverage from here on out, in good conscience.

Posted by: Dennis Berry on August 23, 2008 at 10:15 PM | PERMALINK

Well to my mind any reporter that is willing to work 'for' the McCain camp is supporting a man who should NOT be president. He is NO Reagan. He used to be someone I admired but he has changed and he has always been hot tempered. He makes so many mistakes and errors in judgement, forgets things etc. and his camp says it's because he is a POW. They don't realize that by doing so they have made the case for why he MUST NOT be president... he has issues that could be a threat to our country

Posted by: lbrillante on August 23, 2008 at 10:18 PM | PERMALINK

John McCain '08
Less jobs. More wars.

Posted by: Charlie Black on August 23, 2008 at 10:35 PM | PERMALINK

I wrote to AP slamming them for the biased coverage and promoting McCain. I said I knew of the connection to McCain and believed it colored their reporting.
I also said it is obvious that the donuts and coffee thing while giggling like shcoolgirls giving an apple to teacher makes their ability to cover the campaign a questionable thing.
I said that AP used to be a reliable service for fair reporting but, it's obvious this has deteriorated badly and what a pity for all the people who care about real news rather then propaganda promoting one side.

Posted by: vwcat on August 23, 2008 at 10:45 PM | PERMALINK

POlib wrote: Obama continues to demonstrate that he is smarter than his dtractors, most of whom are just stupid bystanders.

this is true and so is the part about people thinking Obama is wedded to any ideology. he is a progressive by nature but, also a very pragmatic man who is more interested in finding solutions to problems and getting things done.
He was never an ideologist who is hard and fast wedded to that. Above and beyond the ability to find solutions.
It's always been finding a way to fix a problem first and helping those in need even if it means adjusting certain beliefs alittle if it meant helping people.
He always felt being such a hard core ideolog was defeating if it kept those in need from getting help.
Biden is also known in Washington for strong domestic policies including the violence against women act. And Biden has always been connected to his working class roots.
the choice of Biden means a partner who is as committed to helping people and getting things fixed and making things right. And doing it with the best he can find.
Biden is also a big help for getting the judiciary fixed and after the wreckage of eight years of the Bush people and their putting politics over the law, he is someone who can be of big help in straightening that poor branch out.
Biden is also a strong old democrat that was part of the old New Deal wing. Putting him with Obama brings in a new coalition of the newer tech savvy voters and the old new dealers to form a strong wing in the democratic wing of the democratic party against the clintonian new democrat/DLC wing.

Posted by: vwcat on August 23, 2008 at 10:59 PM | PERMALINK

Though I agree with the general point, I cannot say it is surprising. Like so many ambiguous large institutions, the AP is actually controlled not by some objective board or even normal shareholders. The AP owned by the major U.S. news organizations. Thus its board consists of people at best who are simply shills for the corporate agenda, like its CEO William Singleton, and at worst are Rupert Murdoch. So the fact that the AP follows the same 'liberals are crazy' policy as so much of the MSM shouldn't be surprising: that's who they are, and who they work for. For anyone who is curious, my favorite sources of first hand information are the BBC (which is owned by the British public as everyone must pay a TV license fee to have a TV in their home), Reuters (which is public), and Euronews (which is owned by a coalition of public broadcasting corporations, which all have sterling reputations in their home nations). They provide accurate, mostly impartial, and very timely information. They are not perfect, but they really put the effort in and it shows. Stop reading the AP and they'll rethink their strategy. Murdoch might not listen to reason, but he sure listens to money.

Posted by: Banterist on August 23, 2008 at 11:18 PM | PERMALINK

The AP didn't "flub" anything. The corporate media want McCain to win and they're doing what they can to help out. The entire corporate world -- from the defense industry to Wall Street to the MSM -- love their tax breaks and lack of regulation that another Bush term will bring.

Posted by: jhoughton1 on August 23, 2008 at 11:48 PM | PERMALINK

It did not matter who Senator Obama chose as his VP he would still be critized. The propaganda continues...maybe the reporters should speak on facts and not spin.

Posted by: danny on August 23, 2008 at 11:48 PM | PERMALINK

"The Associated Press: Yes, we've built our brand on decades of working to be impartial, and now...and now, we're cashing it in on Ron Fournier's opinion. This is not your father's AP. Buy a newspaper."
(Of course we hope that with all the declining newspaper circulation numbers going on around the country that Fox viewers buy newspapers in big enough numbers to sustain us. Hope it works...though the accountants obviously aren't Fox News viewers.)

Posted by: carsick on August 24, 2008 at 12:24 AM | PERMALINK

Dicksknee wrote: "OK, maybe progressives are not going to be the base of the party anymore. But all I want to know is where do we turn?"

Yo Knee, try poly sci 101, then take time to take in a few healthy doses of American history.

Anyone running off at the mouth without an engaged brain at this late date stands out like the proverbial sore thumb. The USA is damn near doomed. Done in by the ignorant domestic isolationist doctrine of the dumb ass KKK. Proof: The White pro slavery Neocon Klan of so called religious conservatives have been fed white racist anti-intellectual bullshit from conception. They are psychologically stuck in a childish fairytale santa claus, easter bunny, snow white and the 7 midgets, everything good and right is white, state of arrested development. If that's you say, "that's me."

That's why mediocre actors like Ronnie RayGun and John "filthy mcnasty" McCain can be reveered as the New Father of the country and War Hero. How else do you explain a not so good airplane driver who sat out the only war he participated in as a POW blurting out :"I know how to win wars," then fantasising that time served in Jail qualifys and entitles him to be POTUS? I'm a Combat Vet. U.S. Army and I dare McCain to talk that Hero and daily tortured shit to me. He screwed his arms up in the plane crash. Thia ain't big time rasslin.

Ignorance and intolerance is bound up in these guy's DNA. They are White and all their days their White racist mommy and daddy told them they were right. They exist in a separate reality. Their god ordained them. It's a little 'g' god reality where all power is to the White people. Praise god that his white will is being done. Prior to 1994 the worse thing to happen to planet earth was the sixties. Peace, Love, Rock 'nRoll and Black Power. So when Newt Gingrich came on the scene leading the lynch mob, hailed as an intellectual and cannonizing dumb racist ass Ronald Reagan the removing of the foundation stones of the American experiment sped up. They began to be removed brick by Union busting, resegregating, wage lowering, theocratic, wars of agression, redistribution of public wealth to the super rich, permanent republican rule, IQ lowering brick at a time. Karl Rove, Ron Fournier, et al and their deranged Negro automatons are still in shock. They still do not believe that Barack and Michelle Obama got conceived and born to their respective parents.

Fournier and his ilk are what college degreed KKK members look like out of sheet and hood uniform and in business attire. What's new pussy cat? See Condi run all over the globe doing stupid shit in defense of the delusions of White racist PNAC empire, and watch silent Clarence await the signal from Tony S. on how to vote as he fullfils his sick wet dream to out Andrew Johnson Andrew.

You who thought you were non racist progressives, liberal democrats etc. hold your ill informed FISA vote criticisims of President Obama until he's been in office for a couple of years. Criticize Filthy McNasty since your political astuteness has suddenly become so astute. Go out and register some new voters for president Obama. Let's make this the biggest landslide in American electoral history. Give president Obama a super mandate for Change even non believers can believe in. After all, you've been cool with Cheney/Bush for eight years. Count 'em. Eight torturous years. If you wouldn't impeach Cheney/Bush in all this time your efforts to impeach Obama before he takes office will surely be seen for what they truly are. Now look at yourself in the nearest mirror and tell the image staring back at you how smart you are.

If you no longer support President Obama guess what? You never did. He understands, but do yourself a favor; be careful you don't fall victim to the AP/Fox/Neocon propaganda 'cause things they are a changin.

Havaniceday.

Posted by: Adaptagen on August 24, 2008 at 12:58 AM | PERMALINK

Is anyone sure Fournier isn't on McCain's payroll?

Posted by: lm945 on August 24, 2008 at 1:04 AM | PERMALINK

Fournier is a traitorious American and major leauge fuckwad.

Posted by: Leo on August 24, 2008 at 1:40 AM | PERMALINK

America will forever be a nation in decline when the likes of Fournier are in control of the media. With three quarters of the country believing this country is on the wrong track, John McCain offers a continuation of the status quo. In fact, McCain spent the better part of the primary season bragging about his support for Bush and Bush's policies. The only way this man can be competitive with a change agent like Obama is for the mainstream media to fool the country as it has before, describing Obama's choice as fear-driven rather than an example of supreme confidence in surrounding himself with tough and outspoken people. Very simply, Fournier engages in the kind of spin that we've come to expect from the cuntish element of "mainstream" media.

Posted by: Abraham on August 24, 2008 at 1:48 AM | PERMALINK

My name is Ron and I am embarassed to share a name with this shiteating "journalist". The residue on the tissue that wiped my dirty ass was more coherent than Fournier's latest column.

Posted by: Ron on August 24, 2008 at 1:51 AM | PERMALINK

I am French man who follow American politics for long time. Ron Fournier speaks like a tender-anused little boy. If the bellend is removed from author's anus for one minute he sees that he speaks like my whore sister.

Posted by: mahmoud on August 24, 2008 at 1:55 AM | PERMALINK

I like McCain. Why anyone would not support a cancer-ridden albino senior citizen with a drug-addicted trophy wife worth millions is beyond me. John McCain is the only real choice, and Fournier is right to place his lips firmly against the shriveled white ass of this failed fighter pilot, and any member of the media who does not do the same deserves to rot in hell with rest of the America-hating liberals who can eat my dirty bing. God bless our troops as they spill the blood of the evildoers.

Posted by: jack on August 24, 2008 at 2:01 AM | PERMALINK

Washington Monthly continues to provide the best analysis available. Obama clearly blinked. Everyone knows that he wanted to pick someone younger, yet he knew he could not win with more inexperience. So, he picked a man who has been in Washington longer than Obama has been black.

It is clear that what America needs is more tax cuts for millionaires, more tough rhetoric and swagger in our foreign policy, privatized Social Security, vouchers for private schools, offshore oil drilling and MOST importantly, a constitutional amendment banning anus-banging fruitcakes from cheapening my marriage by obtaining one of their own.

Only John McCain can bring us this future, so pray to your lord and savior Jesus Christ to make sure that we manipulate enough voting machines in Ohio to ensure that the if-he-wasn't-so-Muslim-he'd-have-to-be-a-fag-Frenchman running on the Democratic side.

Posted by: Tony on August 24, 2008 at 2:09 AM | PERMALINK

Republicans are the best. If only the liberal media would focus on everything that is good in America the country would see George Bush for the strong leader and great president that he so obviously (to those of us who actually pay attention) is.

America was attacked, and America responded with the iron will of the Republican party. No other party should ever be allowed control over our military and domestic party. Cutting taxes works, if you just ignore the facts reported by the media. Deficits are a minor inconvenience that is well worth the benefit of putting more money in my deep pocket. Healthcare in America is the greatest in the world, if you aren't too stupid or lazy not to get a job that provides it. Only low-skilled dummies (who vote Democrat) have their jobs outsourced, so if you are a smart and connected person your future is secure and will be fine. All I can say to Democrats is this: fuck you and your pansyass bretheren.

FOUR MORE YEARS.

Posted by: Rudy on August 24, 2008 at 2:17 AM | PERMALINK

Democrats are like dogshit that is stuck to the bottom of my Italian loafer: ugly, brown, smelly and something I don't want to even touch. My daughter married a Democrat, and I want to cut his nuts off so they don't make any half-Democratic little bloodsuckers. I can't believe my own flesh and blood chose to give her flower to a fagloving Democrat. When I think of him punishing her soft pink cunt with his dirty member it makes me want to puke. Come to think of it, I might just cut his dick off too. The other night I heard her moaning upstairs as the headboard banged against the wall, and it made me so mad that I was all aroused and pissed at the same time. As soon as I rubbed one out I went in and gave her a piece of my mind.

Posted by: George on August 24, 2008 at 2:26 AM | PERMALINK

There are a lot of fools in this blog who think Obama lack confidence. He choice someone that if in case unable to finish his term because of illness, who better is there to lead this country.

Let's focus on McCain's confidence. Do you know how many position this man has flip flopped to appeal to the far right. If he was confident. Well read this blog http://www.thecarpetbaggerreport.com/flipflops to learn about this man's position and tell me he is still is a man better than Senator Obama.

Posted by: Daniel on August 24, 2008 at 3:56 AM | PERMALINK

The AP is the most powerful source of information in this country. Every daily newspaper and radio/Tv stations rely on it.

It used to be independent (when I was reporting for its competitor (and "then" independent) UPI back in the 50s, but a scroll through the archives of Media Matters or other media watchdog sites shows how very unfairly it treated Gore and Kerry in the previous campaigns.

Fournier and his ilk are trying to distract the public from realizing that the "inexperienced" Obama is the only person in the race who has shown wisdom on foreign policy by opposing the invasion and occupation of Iraq. Wisdom - we need it desperately.

Posted by: LeRoy on August 24, 2008 at 4:04 AM | PERMALINK

George: Please, no more comments like that. They are disgusting, and although I assume you're satirizing what you imagine the sentiments of a particularly disgusting rightwinger are, reading them makes me fear for your mental health.

The Management: Are there no moderators for the comments section?

Posted by: llyn on August 24, 2008 at 6:31 AM | PERMALINK

Fournier is disturbing, further proof that journalism, as practiced by the MSM is turning from reporting facts to blogging. The AP is struggling to be relevant in a new journalistic world. I now know not to consider their reporting too seriously.

Posted by: notsocasualobserver on August 24, 2008 at 7:37 AM | PERMALINK


No matter who President Obama had chosen as VP
he would have been critized and damaged ......

He gave the matter a lot of thought, brilliantly chose who he thought would compliment him to serve the American people best.

We all know him to be a thorough individual, personally i believe he is up to the task alone, but understand he needs someone watching his back and particularly one that, like McCain and Bill Clinton , is allowed to run his mouth and be forgiven by all at the drop of a hat...

both McBush and dreadful Bill can be outrageous and quickly forgiven by Americans all over the country.... Biden has the same ability...
plus he is a regular white guy, clean, smart, with a heart of gold,

By chosing Joe Biden , President Obama has once again showed excellent judgement , charitable heart and the ability to work with someone he has not always seen eye to eye with !

Congratulations are in order !

God is guiding your path President Obama
no amount of smears can touch !!!!

Posted by: Peter Karrigan - Arizona on August 24, 2008 at 8:26 AM | PERMALINK

This analysis frames Obama's decision as signaling a lack of confidence supposedly because Biden's resume does not jibe seamlessly with Obama's overarching “change” message. Are there not more meaningful ways to see this? Yes, Obama needs to remind and reinforce in the minds of voters why he believes change is so important in light of Bush's failures. This means he will need to present clearer contrasts between what he and his opponent would do, and now, as a large portion of the electorate begin to follow the election most closely, is the time to do this. Does this mean Obama has abandoned his original message of change, or has cynically discarded his original ideals to win an election? Of course not, and to even suggest so is a gross oversimplification and disingenuous.

A more sophisticated take would recognize his message it is meant to pull together the many parts of his necessarily complex agenda. Change is not a dogmatic straightjacket or a rigorous litmus test that does not allow for real world complexity. Rather than a lack of confidence, I think Obama's pick shows he is courageous enough to pick a VP who has been critical of him and is not at first glance a perfect fit for his media message. What Obama is really running against is the insularity, cronyism, mendacity and incompetence of the Bush administration, and how far McCain has departed from his earlier willingness to defy party groupthink and recast himself as a strident supporter of Bush and his policies to win over the fundamentalist wing of the party. Is there a better person than Joe Biden, a skeptical supporter of the war at the start and a harsh, well-informed critic of the Bush administration since it became apparent the administration took the country to war on false pretenses, to call Bush to task for his many avoidable foreign policy failures? To highlight the foolhardiness of McCain's overheated rhetoric in addressing threats posed by Iran and Russia? To challenge the notion that Republicans are better at handling national security threats despite Bush's abysmal record of deceit, recklessness, and incompetence in Iraq and elsewhere? This is a major part of the change Obama seeks to make, and he has picked the best person to challenge McCain's mostly unchanged approach to foreign policy and to remind voters of how far Bush and his strident supporters have led us down the wrong track. Rather than dwelling solely on whether Biden somehow represents a cosmetic mismatch in message consistency, it would be more insightful to discuss how Obama is willing to risk criticism that he is straying from his message so that he can add perhaps the best spokesman available to draw the contrasts between himself and his opponent that the media tend to ignore.

Posted by: Unflippable on August 24, 2008 at 8:29 AM | PERMALINK

No matter who President Obama had chosen as VP
he would have been critized and damaged ......

He gave the matter a lot of thought, brilliantly chose who he thought would compliment him to serve the American people best.

We all know him to be a thorough individual, personally i believe he is up to the task alone, but understand he needs someone watching his back and particularly one that, like McCain and Bill Clinton , is allowed to run his mouth and be forgiven by all at the drop of a hat...

both McBush and dreadful Bill can be outrageous and quickly forgiven by Americans all over the country.... Biden has the same ability...
plus he is a regular white guy, clean, smart, with a heart of gold,

By chosing Joe Biden , President Obama has once again showed excellent judgement , charitable heart and the ability to work with someone he has not always seen eye to eye with !

Congratulations are in order !

God is guiding your path President Obama
no amount of smears can touch you !!!!

Further more, those of us who believe in you
do not care who you chose as team to work with
because above all, we trust your impecable judgement about everything,
you have your heart in the right place
YOU PUT COUNTRY BEFORE ANYTHING ELSE
YOU ARE THE ONLY ONE READY TO LEAD
YOU ARE THE ONLY PATRIOTIC AMERICAN POLITICIAN
AND YOUR JUDGEMENT IS IMPECABLE

You have told us over and over you are not PERFECT and we believe this, hence why we would vote for you no matter what !!!

Posted by: Peter Karrigan - Arizona on August 24, 2008 at 8:30 AM | PERMALINK

If this race was about issues and not RACE Obama would be the best pick and the presidential race would be over this also includes Hilary supporters. Look at the division that the Republicans are trying to cause in the Democratic family. No one in their right mind unless they are economically sound would vote for another 4 years of pain, suffering, lies, alibies, bullying, b.s., loss of jobs, slipping economy, loss of world respect, rising energy prices, big oil's big paychecks, no bid contracts, smears, hatred spewing, low life tactics, out of touch politicians, and the list goes on and on. DNC local campaign chair shot and killed, Stephanie Tubbs-Jones life lost. This was a bitter and very stressful campaign. Enough of the dirty politics. The world is watching AMERICA's racism while it tries to tell the world about to practice Democracy...hiprocrits?? Are we? Hilary and Bill played dirty and it is time to put the bandaid on the wounds and stop the underlying dirty tactics by releasing memo's on how to take down Obama and and recognize most of America is not as rich and She and Bill or even Cindy and John McCain for that matter. While we discuss McCain's patriotism do you mention how he cheated on his devoted first wife, threw her under the bus because she wasn't the beauty he left behind. Do you talk about how she waited for him and protected him so he wouldn't worry about her and could concentrate on himself? He went with a younger newer, richer model and left his DEVOTED wife with a lifetime of paid health insurance. Now let's talk honorable, judgement, and yes commitment. America it's time to stop the divisiveness along racial lines and think of the good of this country. Since when did Pat Spewcanon become an analyst without bias and expert on real political matters without prejudice? A doper Limbaugh the conscience of America? HELP!!!!

Posted by: audrey85 on August 24, 2008 at 8:33 AM | PERMALINK

Sad that Fournier, as a GOP operative, is given such a large mouthpiece.

Posted by: JP on August 24, 2008 at 9:20 AM | PERMALINK

"Second, in context, Fournier's objectivity covering the presidential race continues to look shaky. We are, after all, talking about a journalist who, as recently as last year, considered working for the McCain campaign."
1. Fournier is not an objective journalist; he is a corporista
2. He has already demonstrated his preference for Prez and his inabiity to be objective for several reasons: He's still in line for a job with the MCCarp folks should we lose our country's soul so he has much to gain by slashing Obama
3. He is a hypocrite.He would have whined and birched no matter who Obama chose.
4. Biden gets it. He said, "this may be our last chance to save the soul of our country." He should have added, 'If you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem."
YES WE CAN save our nation's soul. Fight the filth candidate/party with truth.


Posted by: GuerrillaJourno on August 24, 2008 at 9:41 AM | PERMALINK

Excellent piece on Fournier. I had the exact same thoughts when I read his so called "article". This guy is nothing but a McCain surrogate masquerading as an AP reporter. The fact that this guy is the AP's Washington bureau chief shows just how far that organization has fallen. It's amusing that he was offered a job by the McSame-as-Bush campaign. I guess he decided that he could keep his job with the AP and still work for McCain at the same time.

As for Joe Biden: Outstanding choice for VP.

Posted by: Independant on August 24, 2008 at 9:44 AM | PERMALINK

Any criticism of Obama means that the person making it is biased, prejudiced or anything. True, I am for McCain. I believe he is wrong on choice and appointment of judges. But I believe, as did Reagan, he will appoint qualified men and women to the bench. What I do want is a real Republican as his running mate, not one tied to the religious right. Christine Todd Whitman, a strong and independent woman is ideal - one who has broken with Bush, too, and who says what she thinks. And no one has been able to say that McCain does not say what he thinks. That is integrity, not spin

Posted by: Herbeert Phillipson on August 24, 2008 at 10:03 AM | PERMALINK


In response to Karmakin Comment: Perhaps you should review the details of the Saddleback Forum. Obama supporter or not, the Sen. Obama has no reason to be annoyed with his performance but rather the lie Pastor Rick Warren told us all, assuring over 5million viewers that the candidate in waiting had no access to the questions -- McCain was meant to be in a "cone". We all now know he was not. And quite frankly, McCain's performance, his responses were obviously pre-prepared. He cheated, that's all there is to the story.
Fournier should be relieved of his duties. He gives a prestigious organization like AP a bad reputation, mainly because he's working two jobs at Ap's expense and ours, the public.
AP, is not Fox News and he should not use it as a platform to support the candidate of his choice. It was not an editorial piece and if were, what about previous articles where he has taken the liberty to distort information surrounding Sen. Obama.
Democrat or Republican sympathizer, we need to speak us when cards are dealt from underneath.

Posted by: Elaine Ranocchi on August 24, 2008 at 10:06 AM | PERMALINK

Obama has been kicked,, knee capped tag teamed,slimed, lied about,called names and even has had his wife attacked by some who think that beauty is only on the outside.Yet the man has continued to stand.
What love this man has for his country!
He could leave the country,go anywhere and be more then welcomed,he could pass the time writing books ,give lectures on red wine verses white and thousands would pay to see him.
And so I wonder ,did Obama have a vision that despite everything he would lead this ungrateful nation?
Did he see the plants and moon aligned for him?
I say to you ,If it was me I would have said "SEE YA" along time ago.
I personally will trust a man with that kind of backbone.I want to live in Obama's America.

Posted by: D.M. CA on August 24, 2008 at 10:27 AM | PERMALINK

The AP story links in your piece don't work anymore.

Posted by: TinHat on August 24, 2008 at 11:37 AM | PERMALINK

The only thing I got out of this article was that evidently whenever someone has a different slant than the left wing "nutcakes" they attack the writer personally, rather than debate their point of view. Could it be that they have a hard time going up againist "facts"? Seems that way to me.

Posted by: TexasLady41 on August 24, 2008 at 1:23 PM | PERMALINK

Also send your polite request to Yahoo, asking them to please make use of unbiased reporters and news services who understand the values and ethichs of journalism:

http://help.yahoo.com/l/us/yahoo/news/general.html

Posted by: BarackAmerica08 on August 24, 2008 at 1:54 PM | PERMALINK

What makes you think Fournier ISN'T working for the McCain campaign right now?

Posted by: David on August 24, 2008 at 1:57 PM | PERMALINK

Great post, but you're missing a key part of the story:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/04/14/murdoch-zell-appointed-to_n_96566.html

I doubt we'll see Rournier forced out any time soon. Certainly not before November.

Posted by: Bill in Chicago on August 24, 2008 at 2:02 PM | PERMALINK

He's a Republican, even worse a McCain supporter, so anything he writes or says is skewed.

My rebuttal to his comment regarding Obama's lack of confidence: Is that why Bush picked Cheney because he lacked confidence? Why wouldn't you pick as running mate someone who has been in the Senate a long time, a man more like LBJ, who can get your agenda pushed through? Biden will be Obama's vehicle of change.

Is Biden perfect? Nope, but no one is. Every candidate has flaws. I just don't see Biden's negatives outweighing all his positives.

Fournier should recuse himself from writing about politics. His credibility is zero.

Posted by: Rob on August 24, 2008 at 4:29 PM | PERMALINK

Amazing amount of carping about one conservative writer. The Washington Post, the New York Times and so many others like the St Pete Times are so in the bag for Obama, it is refreshing to hear a conservative view point in any of those outlets other then George Will.

And by the way, Fournier has a valid point, Obama wimped out.

But more to the point, Biden is a gift to the Republicans because of his ethics. He got caught plagiarizing in law school; he got caught plagiarizing when he ran for the presidency in 1987 and probably should have been caught a bunch more times but no one was watching. And just what does that say about Obamas ethics by choosing such a person? Well, we already know the answer to that question; its okay to borrow the words of another ...

Posted by: Bob on August 24, 2008 at 5:17 PM | PERMALINK

Comments by Elaine Ranocchi. Go ahead keep your belief that McCain was given the questions ahead of time, if its easier for you to believe the lie than to use a bit of common sense. All of the Saddleback questions where basic right wing positions. McCain had already heard and formulated responses to similar questions many times before and could answer without seeming to equivocate. By contrast, Obama had to wade his way through the “muck” in order to show his responses as well reasoned, which wasn’t what the conservative audience wanted, they wanted affirmations which McCain delivered.

I wonder, would you believe that Obama was given the questions if ever McCain goes before some left wing nut job group and can not answer as smoothly as Obama could simply because Obama has heard similar questions and has answered them before, successfully, in front of a group of "progressives" or others who share his core beliefs.

Posted by: Bob on August 24, 2008 at 5:32 PM | PERMALINK

It's that damn liberal press again isn't it?

This is a disgrace to anyone who believes its the press' job to give us the facts and let us decide - not to take sides.

What a disgrace

Posted by: maria on August 24, 2008 at 5:49 PM | PERMALINK

What people are not used to and see as a sign of weakness and lack of confidence is someone who is confident and strong enough to take on someone who isn't a "yes" man.

Bush was nothing but a "yes" man for Cheney and Rove. He wasn't intelligent enough to lead so they led him on their personal agenda. And he certainly was too stubborn and arrogant to admit any mistakes.

To me this makes Obama a refreshing change.

Posted by: grata2ude on August 24, 2008 at 7:14 PM | PERMALINK

AP is not owned by Moon. That's UPI...

Posted by: Glynn Wilson on August 24, 2008 at 8:48 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, you hit the nail right on the head Steve. Fournier is just another biased reporter, who obviously pledges allegiance to Mcsame. No surprise that he's doing whatever he can to smear Obama. Shameful? Yes. Surprising? No.

Biden is the real Washington "Maverick", and the entire GOP should be nervous as hell. He's gonna eat those boys for breakfast. Biden is smart as a whip, as is Obama, and once the debates start, the nation will hopefully be able to see that McCain and CO. are just offering more of the same. More of the same is why our economy is a joke, our international image is a joke, the war in Iraq is unwinnable (you don't fight terrorists conventionally), and our healthcare system is a disgrace to healthcare. Oh, and don't even get me started on the Repubs total lack of respect for our planet/environment. They destroy everything they touch, and that isn't helpful when it's time to do some rebuilding.

Obama/Biden '08

YES WE CAN!!!

Posted by: Jerry on August 24, 2008 at 9:42 PM | PERMALINK

Fournier should work for Fox news instead of AP Washington Bureau Chief. All his articles have favoured McCain instead of Obama. This is what I call bias reporting. Fournier should be fired or move to Fox news so he can do his hatred reporting.

Posted by: phyllis on August 24, 2008 at 10:00 PM | PERMALINK

so when someone doesn't like obama they are now tagged as being "evil". that bodes well for america.

Posted by: jrzshor on August 24, 2008 at 11:56 PM | PERMALINK

The AP is supposed to provide unbiased, non-partisan news ( which then gets spun like cotton candy after the fact) Fournier's politcization of AP is wrong. I urge many outlets to drop AP's wire service and go with Reuter's or UP( or whatever it is now)I instead.

Posted by: RememberNovember on August 25, 2008 at 9:05 AM | PERMALINK

Whoever thinks that Obama was going to run away with this election is not a realistic person. This was going to be a fight from the time it looked as though Obama was going to be the Democratic Nominee. As much as people don't want to admit it, and by people I mean white people, it is going to be hard for a large number of people to vote for a black man.

Posted by: Charles on August 25, 2008 at 11:08 AM | PERMALINK

[[We'd get a Congress that could actually accomplish things, and it's a Congress that's going to be Democratic for a while and will only get more so if it actually starts doing its job.]] -- professordarkheart

No, you wouldn't, for the simple fact that since 1994 Congressional Republicans have been absolutely opposed to any real bipartisan compromising. Particularly between 2001 and 2006, "bipartisan compromise" meant giving the GOP what it wanted and never anything even close to the opposite. Since the Dem takeover, the minority GOP approach has been not bipartisanship and compromise but delay, obstruction and obfuscation -- with, from the GOP standpoint, almost complete success. (FISA, anyone?)

Live in the real world, will you? And more importantly, if elected, will Obama?

Posted by: Lex on August 25, 2008 at 3:02 PM | PERMALINK

Something I had not realized about Fournier: He was one of the first reporters to push the false "Al Gore said he invented the Internet" meme.

Posted by: Kenneth Fair on August 26, 2008 at 7:51 PM | PERMALINK

Fournier needs to be fired (allowing him to find a new home at Fox) and the AP needs to issue a public statement reaffirming its commitment to journalistic integrity, or the AP will come to be seen as just another Fox-like cog in the GOP propaganda machine. It's been heading in that direction for a while now.

Personally, I'm going to write to my local Air America/Jones-affilliated radio station and request that they stop using AP for the news spots.

Posted by: SandraL on August 27, 2008 at 3:54 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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