June 24, 2010

Name That Party: Again-Indicted Kwame Kilpatrick Still Not Tagged as a Dem as AP Appears to Cover His Tracks

NameThatPartyKwameKilpatrickThe Associated Press is still failing to tag the currently imprisoned former Detroit Mayor and former beneficiary of President Barack Obama’s high praise Kwame Kilpatrick as a Democrat.

I know, same-old, same-old. And Generalissimo Francisco Franco is still dead. But there’s more to this particular chapter in this ongoing “Name That Party” narrative.

The wire service kept its near-perfect Kilpatrick non-labeling track record intact in two shorter items and a lengthier treatment of the latest development in Kwame’s calamaties, all published in roughly the past 24 hours. The closest Kwame got to being tagged as a Dem occurred in an otherwise detailed report turned in by Ed White, where he described Kilpatrick’s mother, Congresswoman Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick, as “D-Mich.” The link to White’s report doesn’t contain his byline; I’ll explain why later in the post, where I will also suggest that there is reason to believe the AP has attempted to bottle up White’s full report.

A six-paragraph story carried at the Toledo Blade last night (HT to Maggie Thurber in an e-mail) described the latest and by far most serious development in this sickening saga:

In an indictment filed Wednesday, he’s accused of failing to report at least $640,000 in taxable income between 2003 and 2008, which includes money, private jet flights and personal expenses paid by the (Kilpatrick) Civic Fund.

The government says he used the money to pay for yoga and golf lessons, golf clubs, summer camp for his kids, personal travel, moving expenses, as well as “counter-surveillance and anti-bugging equipment.”

White’s report goes into further detail and captures much more additional reaction:

A taste for premium steaks, shopping at Gucci and a five-bedroom mansion helped send former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick to state prison. His latest legal hardship is a federal indictment with allegations of even more reckless spending.

… The indictment said donors were misled into believing their money would be used for legal purposes. Adolph Mongo, a political consultant to Kilpatrick in 2005, told The Associated Press he was paid out of the Civic Fund. He described it as being like an ATM.

The government alleges Kilpatrick received nearly $200,000 from the fund in 2007 in the form of cash, private jet flights and other personal expenses — an amount that exceeded his annual salary as mayor.

His mother, U.S. Rep. Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick, D-Mich., said she was devastated by the charges. The ex-mayor’s spokesman, Mike Paul, struck a positive tone, noting the indictment does not allege any bribery schemes after a yearslong investigation at City Hall that has netted ex-councilwoman Monica Conyers and many others.

“This investigation puts an end to the ridiculous rumors that the mayor was personally involved with corruption, payoffs and bribes. … Those rumors were hurtful and were lies from the pit of hell!” Paul said in an e-mail.

Not so fast, McQuade told AP.

“The investigation is continuing. If we find additional charges that we can prove they will be brought,” the prosecutor said.

The 13 fraud charges each carry a maximum punishment of 20 years in prison. Judges, however, mostly order concurrent sentences, which means Kilpatrick would not serve the rest of his life behind bars if convicted.

… A prominent Detroit pastor, the Rev. Horace Sheffield, said the federal indictment is another chapter in a “sad saga.”

“At some point, the Kwame Kilpatrick story needs to end,” he said. “It tarnishes the reputable way his mother has served in Congress. Detroit is more than Kwame Kilpatrick.”

Now it gets interesting.

I originally found White’s story with his byline at the AP’s main site last night at about midnight. Going there at about 1:30 p.m. ET, here’s what I found in a search on Kilpatrick’s first name:

APkwameSearch062410

Though one would expect the first item listed to go to the longer story, here is the full text as found at the link (dynamic, and subject to change):

APkwameStory062410at315am

Thus, the wire service has flushed roughly 15 paragraphs of details, including the fact that the investigation is still ongoing, down the memory hole, leaving  an opening paragraph that reads like an editorial, two paragraphs of facts, and a paragraph of “let it go” sympathy. You’ve got to be kidding me. The “creative” folks at AP continue to invent new forms of journalistic malpractice.

Since when does a detailed report about an indicted criminal get sliced by two-thirds or more about 12 hours after the original event? The answer to that question appears to be: “In AP-Land, when Democrats are involved.”

I should note that the word “Democrat” does appear at the long version of the story at MLive.com. Not in the story, but after it, in a comment, where reader “MIRef” responds to the Rev. Sheffield’s “let’s move on” sentiment:

“At some point, the Kwame Kilpatrick story needs to end,” he said. “It tarnishes the reputable way his mother has served in Congress. Detroit is more than Kwame Kilpatrick.”

Anybody else gag over this quote?

In reality, Kilpatrick is the perfect living example of Detroit and what happens when Democrats are given unlimited power.

No wonder the AP buried the gory details at its main site. It wouldn’t want readers to start thinking that what “MIRef” has written is true.

Go here for a rundown of previous BizzyBlog posts on establishment media Kilpatrick-is-a-Democrat avoidance.

Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.

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3 Comments

  1. By comparison, look at how consistently and predictably they identify Jack Abramoff as a Republican.

    Comment by mike — June 24, 2010 @ 2:55 pm

  2. You have shown the political bias of the AP many times over. Case closed. However, let me suggest that, except for the truly brain dead, the moniker “ex-mayor of Detroit” actually does identify his political party. After all, does anyone think a person with that job and – dare I say it – that skin color would not be a Democrat? Don’t get me wrong. I’m not disputing your point. I guess I’m saying maybe you ought to conserve your “name that party” bullets for a target that really needs the clarification.

    Comment by boqueronman — June 25, 2010 @ 1:46 pm

  3. #2, points well-taken. The problem is that by keeping the word out of articles, AP and others are causing search engines not to find their work.

    Further, if posts are put up at relatively high traffic places like NewsBusters that are recognized as news sources by the likes of Google (which they are), it serves as a partial offset to establishment press negligence.

    Comment by TBlumer — June 25, 2010 @ 7:26 pm

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