For the first few years of George W. Bush’s presidency, Mark Tapscott was a journalist without a newsroom, shouting from the sidelines about his industry’s swift decline. Tapscott ran the Heritage Foundation’s Center for Media and Public Policy, and trained reporters in the use of technology for research and crunching numbers. When he considered how few conservatives, libertarians, or real skeptics of federal power were working in newsrooms, he saw a problem that was making the growth of government possible.
“The [Freedom of Information Act],” Tapscott wrote in a 2004 commentary, “has been subverted from its original intent – shining light in all corners of the federal establishment – and used instead by the bureaucrats, special interests and politicians who live off the Nanny State, especially those hiding behind closed doors in places like Health and Human Services, the Education Department and Housing and Urban Development.”
Sitting up straight in his office at the Washington Examiner, where Tapscott has been the editorial page editor for three years, he repeats the point. “There are 57 people in the Freedom of Information Hall of Fame,” he says. “Three of them are conservatives — two of them, if you don’t count me. Now, that’s a problem.”
Since its launch in 2005, the second daily metro newspaper owned by conservative billionaire Phillip Anschutz (the first was the San Francisco Examiner) has struggled for an identity in a city crawling with political journalists. But since the November 2008 election, the Examiner has beefed up its staff and pulled prominent right-leaning reporters and pundits away from publications like The American Spectator and National Review. Tapscott and a growing staff of political and opinion writers are carving out an identity as the conservative version of the left-leaning opinion and investigative journalism sites that — in the view of many conservatives — have used reporting to embarrass conservatives and the Republican Party.Nice piece. Read the whole thing, here.
Monday, June 22, 2009
From David Weigel, "Examiner Leads Conservative Response to Liberal Blogosphere":