SHILLING FOR DELAY….Yesterday a judge dismissed a conspiracy charge against Tom DeLay but allowed the money-laundering charges against him to go to trial. Jonah Goldberg rounds up the headlines.
Jonah passed along the headlines without comment, but I won’t. It’s pretty obvious that the big news was the fact that the judge allowed the serious charges to go to trial, and that tossing out the one conspiracy charge was a decidedly secondary part of the story. With that in mind, the Washington Post, New York Times, and Los Angeles Times all got it right. Fox News and the Washington Times acted as partisan shills (Conspiracy Charge Rejected!!!).
And CNN? They joined the shills, which is even more bizarre than you’d think considering that the AP story they ran opened like this:
A judge dismissed a conspiracy charge Monday against Rep. Tom DeLay but refused to throw out the far more serious allegations of money-laundering, dashing the congressman’s hopes for now of reclaiming his post as House majority leader.
The lead makes it crystal clear what the most important part of the story is. So why did the headline make it sound as if DeLay had won a major victory?