Arizona Eagletarian

Arizona Eagletarian

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Redistricting -- Those Poor, Persecuted Republicans

So, do you think you've seen it all? Well, how about this: the newly elected chairman of the Arizona Republican Party, in a statement quoted by Roll Call reporter Abby Livingston said:

“Arizona’s political landscape today reflects a flawed process where election districts were drawn up based on a one-sided political agenda and too much secrecy, and I’m taking action now to make sure that doesn’t happen again,” state GOP Chairman Robert Graham said in a statement.
“We are looking for an honest and open process that doesn’t favor one group of voters over another — one that is truly bipartisan and treats voters equally while putting an end to the discrimination against Republicans.”
Now Roll Call bills itself as:
In a world of media spin and special interest bias, CQ Roll Call has stayed true to its roots. From Capitol Hill hearing rooms to campaign war rooms, from the White House to the House and Senate floors, CQ Roll Call covers Congress, inside and out...
With the largest press corps on Capitol Hill, CQ Roll Call has earned a reputation for delivering comprehensive, accurate and objective congressional reporting.
That MIGHT be somewhat true, but in its reporting on Graham's press release, Ms. Livingston seemed to practically fall over herself attempting to validate the concerns of the GOP whiners.
Arizona featured one of the most protracted, nasty rounds of redistricting of any state last cycle. But operatives from both parties admit that Democrats got the better end of the independent commission-drawn map during the decennial process.
IF Roll Call actually was true to the mission it brags about, Ms. Livingston would have to name those "operatives from both parties." My impression, however, is that this kind of reporting is akin to Yellow Sheet envy. The Yellow Sheet unabashedly reports "News Notes & Gossip."

THIS tripe -- copying a press release and reporting it as news, then making vague claims of admissions from operatives from both parties -- is FAR from comprehensive, far from accurate and about as far from objective as a reporter can get.

Why, you might ask, do I think this is a big deal?

For the Arizona GOP to complain about how they got the short end of the stick is their right. Objectively, however, the outcome was NOT the result of a one-sided process, nor was it the result of secret deals. Deliberations were done in open session. For the entire time the maps were in process.

This conspiracy of incompetence between the AZ GOP and Roll Call does not mark the first or the only effort that has been made to mischaracterize the painstaking process of gathering quantifiable public input and analysis of voter registration data.

If THIS situation were to be reported COMPREHENSIVELY, and objectively, it would not result in a pervasive meme that the GOP were victims in the process. But I expect the AZ GOP to consistently make that false claim from now until doomsday. Thankfully, we do not have to rely on corporate media to pander to the "persecuted Right Wing" any more.

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