March 6, 2008

One of the larger frustrations of this primary season has been how the media, in their collective need to create a dramatic narrative, have consistently overstated outcomes of the primaries. For example, Obama may get more delegates than Clinton in Texas, but all of the mainstream media talked about Clinton's big victory stopping the Obama momentum juggernaut. Very dramatic, but hardly reflective of the reality. At different times, they've predicted the impending death of both candidates' campaigns and floated the idea that one or the other should drop out for the sake of party unity. And all of them have been making John McCain's snoozer campaign (did any of you watch his speech when he secured the nomination? *yawn*) to be far more credible than it is (he loses against either one in head to head match ups). On Wednesday's Countdown, in the midst of their post-primary analysis, Richard Wolffe admits to Keith Olbermann that the media coverage leaves much to be desired, if you're looking for honest reportage.

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And I think, honestly, frankly speaking, the media has fallen into a real hole here, not so much of the Clintons' making but of our own making. We like to go through election night, calling states as if this was a general election and it's "Winner Take All." It's not. It makes for great teevee, but what really matters is the delegate counts. So we are calling these races on the basis of who wins an overall state and it's frankly misleading. It doesn't tell you who is progressing in the march towards the nomination.

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