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San Francisco Examiner Takes A Turn To The Left

San Francisco Examiner

  First Posted: 12/02/11 08:27 PM ET Updated: 12/02/11 08:41 PM ET

This article comes to us courtesy of SF Weekly's The Snitch.

By Erin Sherbert

The San Francisco Examiner closed out the month of November with a mix of good and bad news. The good -- actually great -- news is that readers will no longer have to swallow the evangelical dogma that was spewed by its former owner, Phil Anschutz. The bad news is the Ex will be delivering its more liberal paper with a much smaller staff.

Shortly after meeting with the Ex staff on Thursday, Todd Vogt, the new president and publisher of the San Francisco Examiner, confirmed that the new owners, a consortium led by the Black Press Group, would indeed be making cuts at the paper as soon as next week. He couldn't say how many layoffs there would be, but said it would be nothing like the "magnitude of cuts other newsrooms have seen in the Bay Area" over the last few years.

"We want the paper to remain a quality product, but to do that, we have to remain in business," Vogt told us. "The core reporting staff will not be affected."

"Unfortunately, it's coming at that time of the year with the holidays," he added.

On the more positive side, Vogt noted that the paper's editorial and opinion pages will be unrecognizable to readers, meaning no more pro-Sarah Palin prose! "The ultra right-wing Christian conservative slant the previous owner insisted on having is gone -- it didn't ever have a place here," he told us.

Vogt said that he won't be inserting his own opinions (by, the way, he's not evangelical!) and political positions into the newspaper; rather, he has asked the editorial team to write local columns that mirror the intensely liberal readership in San Francisco.

"I told them that every day the paper has to reflect the readers," Vogt said. "We will not be a political stump for anyone or any cause, but I never understood, from a business standpoint, why it made sense to run five days in a row anti-Obamacare [editorials], whether the readers in San Francisco support the president or don't -- it didn't make sense."

Funny, that seems to be the most sense the Examiner has made in years.

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