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October 24, 2004

Statesman Endorses Bush

By Byron LaMasters

Personally, I don't care too much. Undecideds and conservative independents considering voting for folks like Mark Strama, Kelly White or Patrick Rose might be more apt to take the Statesman's recommendations on local races after seeing their endorsement of Bush. There's more to it than that, however. I received several emails earlier this week that a Bush endorsement by the Statesman was forthcoming, including this.

Just heard the horrifying rumor from a source within Cox Newspapers Inc. that Austin's paper will endorse Bush this Sunday.

We have to try to stop such an outrage.

E-mail the person responsible for this decision, publisher, Mike Laosa: mlaosa@statesman.com

Or call: (512) 445-3500

If you are horrified, let them know. If you are going to tell everyone you know, let them know. If you are willing to cancel your subscription, let them know.

If there is any chance to change this decision, we have to write or call today.

Send this to everyone you know.

I don't know the validity of the email, and I didn't post it at the time, because, frankly, there's more important fights to fight less than two weeks from election day. The Statesman endorsed Bush in 2000, so their endorsement of Bush this year is not a big surprise. Overall, the paper is relatively fair in my opinion, especially in taking on Republicans in the legislature. I don't know the background to the Bush endorsement, so go ahead and believe what you want about it.

Posted by Byron LaMasters at October 24, 2004 12:17 AM | TrackBack


This is the letter to the editor I just sent to the Statesman.

Sunday's endorsement of George Bush for the presidency is a poor move - the editorial board of the Statesman points out in it's editorial all the fundimental reasons Bush cannot be trusted but "urges" the Republican candidate to replace advisors and change strategy. It is delusional to believe that this President will alter his staff or his strategy, and any endorsement dependant on the optimistic idea that Bush can change is a misguided one at best. His intractability has been noticed by a number of separate reports and indeed, has been been touted as the main reason to vote for him by his own campaign.

While I respect the Statesman's opinion, I will not continue my subscription - I don't doubt your noble motives, or even your politics, merely your judgment. The endorsement gives the strong air of newsmen who have not been paying attention to the news - and if so, how am I, as a reader, to trust that the Statesman is providing the information I need to self-govern?

Posted by: Brian Boyko at October 24, 2004 02:13 AM

I can't say that the endorsement is that surprising. But, in a way, it's largely a moot point. Most of the electorate have made up their minds in this election and a newspaper endorsement in a firm red state won't have much impact. That said, I still think Austin will go Kerry.

At least this way, I can counter my father-in-laws claim that the Statesman is a "liberal rag."

Posted by: Mike in Austin at October 24, 2004 07:53 AM

Does anyone have a direct phone number? The one posted goes to an automated system.

I agree that the endorsement won't have an impact, but it is truly disheartening.

I understand the 3 "R"s - Rich, Relgious, Racist - The republicans are your party.

And the AAS editors are certainly rich, probably religious, and perhaps subconciously racist.

As a culture, we are fucked.

Posted by: Claudius at October 24, 2004 08:33 AM

I hope that Austinites are better behaved than Crawfordites were when the Iconoclast endorsed Kerry.

Posted by: Chip at October 24, 2004 10:31 AM

Disappointing, to be sure, but the Statesman hasn't reflected actual Austin values in years. AAS has yet to meet a developer or big business it didn't like, so no real surprise it would go for Bush if only to please its preferred constituency.

Besides, I suspect they looked at the circulation numbers, and decided that actual Austinite's newspaper purchases are in decline compared to GOP bastions like Georgetown and Round Rock, so AAS sees them as the emerging market. And money talks, baby.

Posted by: Ole Hank at October 25, 2004 02:08 PM
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