Tuesday, March 13, 2018

EXTRA: Does the 'power of the press’ extend to endorsements any longer?

I couldn’t help but be amused by the Chicago Tribune editorial page on Tuesday.

FAIRLEY: Will 2 Tribune endorsements help?
The newspaper, which already has endorsed Sharon Fairley for the Democratic nomination for Illinois attorney general, felt compelled to write another editorial about the merits of the woman who helped create the current panel that oversees Chicago Police activity and investigates the doings of bad cops, and also is a former federal prosecutor in Chicago.

FAIRLEY IS ONE of eight people wishing to be the Democrat who succeeds Lisa Madigan, but the most recent poll by the We Ask America group (conducted for the Capitol Fax newsletter) shows her running fourth.

With only 3.5 percent support. This remains a political brawl between former Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn’s comeback desires and the dreams of state Sen. Kwame Raoul, D-Chicago, to become something other than a Hyde Park neighborhood pol.

Fairley appears to be part of the anonymous pack, no matter what her credentials. Which led the Tribune to take another crack at influencing its readership on how to vote this week, or a week from Tuesday on Election Day.

It will be odd if Fairley is the candidate who had the official endorsements of both the Tribune and Chicago Sun-Times (along with a few other publications, including the State Journal-Register of Springfield) but couldn’t rise above the pack. Probably more evidence of the declining influence that newspaper endorsements carry, although I still think they serve a purpose in helping to clarify a publication’s perspective and judging the honesty and objectivity of its reporting.


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