Friday, October 28, 2005

Wendy's Lofty Tale

I wanted to write about this earlier, but it has been an exceptionally busy week.

Wendy Zomparelli explains in great detail the process she would like us to believe is used as The Roanoke Times develops it's Candidate Endorsements.
Next Saturday, we will begin publishing our 2005 candidate endorsements. In determining them, our editorial board members (whose names appear in the upper left-hand corner on Page 2) have spent countless hours over many months reading candidates' campaign literature, listening to debates and press conferences and studying public service or business and professional records.

From this analysis, we compose a portrait that goes beyond a candidate's official biography. Past behaviors are better indicators than campaign promises of how they will act, so we pay particular attention to actions revealing candidates' personal integrity.

Next, we invite candidates for major office to meet with us. We use the same format for all these sessions. The candidates open with a statement about their main campaign issues and initiatives; we then open it up to questions and answers. In closing, we ask candidates to tell us why they are the electors' best choice.

After all these sessions have been completed, the six of us meet to talk through the options and reach consensus.
After very careful consideration, and hours of agonizing soul searching, and extreme consideration given to what is best for Virginia, Wendy, Tommy and crew will endorse the following;

Governor------Tim Kaine
Lt. Governor---Leslie Byrne
Atty. General--Creigh Deeds

Sure, in some local race, most likely for show more than any other reason, a Republican will be endorsed. I'll go out on a limb here and quess it will be Anne B. Crockett-Stark, from Wytheville, for the 6th District House of Delegates.

Now, I know it does not take a rocket scientist to predict who Wendy and Tommy will endorse, especially for the three statewide offices. I do this instead to point out the complete disdain Ms. Zomparelli apparently has for her readers. Read the excerpt above from her recent editorial. She expects her readers to believe that this is somehow an objective process.

In the same article she also states;
Throughout this process, we observe a strict separation between the news and editorial departments. No news reporters or editors are included, consulted or even informed about our choices before we publish them.
Yes, she seems proud of the fact that this is all done in secret, with no pesky news people watching.

Wouldn't it be wonderful, though, if one of the more dedicated and honest reporters at the Times (yes, there are a few of them there. Mason Adams and Cody Lowe come to mind) were assigned to cover this process? The readers of The Roanoke Times deserve to know that what Ms. Zomparelli has described is truly how the process works. The Roanoke Times has no Omsbudsman to look out for the readers interest, but it does have some competent reporters.

How about it Wendy? Let us actually see how you and Tommy go about this.

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