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The Filibuster Question And Politico’s Lousy Job Of Reporting

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Politico has a piece up on the filibuster which unfortunately distorts my view on the subject despite my having spent 30 minutes with one of the authors, Daniel Strauss, on the phone discussing it last week.

I don’t have a position on whether the “Reid Rule” should be invoked to repeal Obamacare “root and branch,” or pass an end to the  sequester on the Defense department, and the article I wrote cited by the authors as evidence that I was one of the “loudest voices” calling for the invocation of the “Reid Rule” earlier this year doesn’t support that description because it instead fact outlines the very choice the Senate with a GOP president would face.  (I wonder if they read it, or why Strauss didn’t mention it to me or call me back for a comment.) I spent a lot of time with Strauss explaining how the filibuster serves important ends and supports the constitutional design of the Senate but that folks like former Senator Jim Talent and others are raising the issue of the urgency of quick action, and urging him to call other experts like Dr. Larry Arnn of Hillsdale College for an understanding of the complicated issue involved, and pointed to Senator Tom Cotton who had discussed both sides of the argument without declaring one way or the other, which is what I have been at pains to do.

The Strauss/Everett piece again confirms the wisdom of my usual rule of only doing interviews with Beltway journalists over the air.  This is especially true of the new gang at Politico which is dragging the site left, left, left.  I don’t know why Strauss would write up our interview this way –I went to great lengths to emphasize that I hadn’t decided one way or the other, but saw the issue as an interesting one as he correctly noted because it exposes a seam in the GOP filed– but I suspect the category of “interested but impartial conservative journalist” didn’t interest him, his co-author or his editor.  Unfortunate, that inability to correctly record an interviewee’s opinions.  It follows a reporter, impacting their reputation.

My Washington Examiner column this AM notes the rapid decline of seriousness in D.C.  Part of that is the fault of a press corps that cares more about clicks than getting a story right, even if the story is complicated and important.  The grey heads at Politico need to sit the youngsters down and talk to them about this or they will continue to bleed credibility and talent.  I spent quite a lot of time with Dylan Byers earlier this month and was happy to do so, and Mike Allen is always welcome on the show, as was James Hohmann when he hung his hat there.  But botching a story this badly makes you wonder about a brand, it really does.  It wouldn’t have been hard to get it right. It would merely have been inconvenient.


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