Anyone Wishing to Evaluate John McCain Won't Get Old Media Help
It's not exactly a secret that John McCain is not admired by conservatives for a variety of reasons.
The conventional wisdom is that the Arizona Senator and GOP presidential nominee needs to mend some, uh, fences (warning: profanity at link) with many in his party.
Fair enough, but a word to the wise, and this is relevant regardless of personal ideology: If either McCain himself, or anyone who wishes to give him a fair shake, thinks Old Media is going to help them out, they're sadly mistaken. The candidate is going to have to go around the media types he may still believe are his friends. Voters in general should not be satisfied saying, "Well, I haven't seen or heard anything from him," because Old Media will work to minimize his visibility.
Case in point:
Last Tuesday, McCain clinched the Republican nomination. No matter what you think of the guy right now, it was a historic moment, and from a pure-news perspective, completed a remarkable political comeback. Conventional wisdom had McCain's candidacy dead last summer; the only greater turnaround in my lifetime that I can think of is Richard Nixon's in the 1960s.
McCain's victory was his first opportunity to speak to the American people as a whole. He did that, and gave a pretty good speech -- which got relatively little press coverage on Tuesday night. It was then followed, as NewsBusters' Scott Whitlock noted, by virtually no coverage on the networks' Wednesday morning shows.
Full transcripts of McCain's speech can be found at the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times (link may require registration), All Headline News, the UK Guardian, at JohnMcCain.com (with partial video), and of course at a few forum and blog sites.
As far as I can tell, that's it. I wouldn't have learned of McCain's good speech myself if I hadn't read this post at National Review's The Corner.
Further, as NewsBusters' Brent Baker noted Tuesday, "A new study of positive versus negative campaign coverage found ..... that John McCain's coverage grew more negative as he got closer to winning the GOP presidential nomination." Don't expect it to get any better now that he's the nominee.
Passivity and waiting for McCain to come to you would be justified if we were in a fair and balanced media environment, but anyone who has spent more than a few minutes here knows that isn't the case. McCain owes it to us to try his best, but voters of all ideologies owe it to themselves to be proactive. Perhaps a good start would be reading McCain's Tuesday night speech. Old Media is hoping you aren't interested enough.
Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.