Wednesday, March 2, 2011

They Ask "Questions"

Keith Shortall of MPBN (an organization capable of excellent, incisive reporting) had five minutes with Sen. Susan Collins.

He asked the following questions--and only the following questions:

--So you're talking about the erosion of etiquette or rules of decorum in the Senate or the House?

--You mentioned occupying the center. Are you not maybe feeling more of the brunt because you're getting it from both sides [chuckling]?

--Are there colleagues do you think who agree with you on the civility issue but sort of feel pressure to be loud and to be divisive in order to protect themselves politically?

--And it's your belief that colleagues who go along with that [a more civil approach] and make an effort will not suffer politically?
In short, he prods Collins to flesh out her views; commiserates with her about her position in the debate; and then lobs a couple of softballs that implicitly accept her basic thesis.

No push back. No attempt to play devil's advocate. Not even a hint of an effort to hold her accountable for her own words and actions.

Why does a serious, aggressive news organization switch over to propaganda mode when the subject is Sens. Snowe and Collins?

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