Cheat-Seeking Missles

Friday, January 04, 2008

Politico's Thompson Play Sooo Old School

Fred Thompson did not resign after tying for third in Iowa, as The Politico said he would. Still, that couldn't keep the Web-rag from coming up with this misleading headline this morning: Resignation greets Thompson's third place.

Not that kind of resignation, dummy -- the "oh, well ... sheesh" kind of resignation. Never mind that it was Politico that started the whole resignation speculation bit anyway.

Politico needs to decide whether it's going to be a good news outlet or a goofball news outlet, and sophomoric headline tricks like this point it in the goofball direction.

The article itself makes it clear that Thompson, while worried about finances, isn't finished yet:
He asked the crowd where he needs to go next. At their shouts of “South Carolina!” Thompson nodded approvingly. Thompson’s last best shot will be in the south, where he polls significantly better than New Hampshire.

Thompson implied he might soon drop out of the race, saying, “We’ll have to look at our finance numbers.”

But there’s nothing like playing to a crowd with low expectations.

“It looks like someone’s gonna have to carry a strong conservative message, and it looks like it’s gonna be me.” The crowd went wild as if Thompson had just sworn up and down that he was sure to win.
Not in the article is any mention of the pub's Tuesday evening article predicting that Thompson would resign if he did not finish in second place. Not any inside scoop -- or confession -- detailing on how they got duped by a few opportunistic political operatives, missing the oldest political trick in the book.

How very old school of this new media outlet. My trust factor in Politico just dropped down, waaay down.

hat-tip: memeorandum; art: The Ward View

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