The Media is Now Obama's Base?

Matt Lewis
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Posted: Apr 21, 2008 9:13 AM
Over at the WSJ, John Fund offers some good thoughts concerning why the media has suddenly decided to focus on McCain's "temper problems":

“While John McCain is popular with reporters, they have clearly chafed as they see him adopt more-conservative positions on taxes and immigration in the past year. His coverage is much less favorable than it used to be.

But Mr. Obama, who sports the most liberal voting record of any senator according to the nonpartisan National Journal, has avoided much criticism of that record by implying that any conventional critique of his issue positions represent the tired politics of the past. If he had his way, questions about character and questions about issues would be off-limits.”

While Fund is correct in observing that McCain's conservative positions don't sit well with the media, there is also a less sinister reason for the media's reversal on McCain:  They are biased toward things that are "new" --  and the McCain story is now eight years old.  As such, the Obama narrative is more compelling.  

Regardless of whether the motivation is ideologically driven -- or marketing-driven -- the coverage (so far) hasn't been fair -- as the Clintons have pointed out.

The question in my mind is whether or not the media will be able to make this narrative stick.  After all, while narratives are hard to break, they are not impossible to break.  Will the media continue to cast Obama in a positive light, while simultaneously turning on their former "golden boy," John McCain, for the rest of the year?

More and more, I am convinced McCain is uniquely prepared to carry the Republican banner this year.  And try though they might, the media simply will not be able to portray McCain as some sort of "evil Republican." 

Watch McCain's interview yesterday on "This Week" -- and you'll see what I mean.  As far as I'm concerned, this interview is a prime example of how McCain will not allow the media to portray him the way they normally portray Republicans ...