THE BLOG
10/24/2007 01:59 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

Santorum Named Columnist; How Can Newspapers Complain?

Let's see...Newspapers like the Philadelphia Inquirer are complaining that they are losing readership. Philadelphia is an overwhelmingly Democratic city. And yet, here is the announcement from the Philadelphia Inquirer, as reported by Editor & Publisher.

The excerpt:

Former Sen. Rick Santorum Gets 'Philadelphia Inquirer' Column

By E&P Staff

Published: October 24, 2007 12:05 PM ET

NEW YORK A press conference will be held at 1:30 this afternoon at the Philadelphia Inquirer to announce that it has added former Sen. Rick Santorum to its stable of columnists.

Santorum, you may recall, isn't even from Philadelphia. He was from Western Pennsylvania (I say "was" and not "is" because he actually moved to a wealthy Virginia suburb). But beyond that, you may recall, as Editor & Publisher did, that Santorum "was soundly defeated in his race for re-election last year." In fact, he received just 16 percent of the vote in Philadelphia County - the state's most populous county and the county that is the Inquirer's customer base.

So how can a newspaper like the Philadelphia Inquirer complain about losing readership when, in a major Democratic city, it is providing news analysis from a right-wing Republican who was soundly rejected by voters, who isn't even originally from Philadelphia, and who actually decided to move out of Pennsylvania while representing the state in the U.S. Senate?

Hell, I, like Santorum, used to live in Pennsylvania. And actually, I actually used to live in the city of Philadelphia. I also am a progressive and a Democrat, which is what Philadelphia is. I wonder why the Inquirer has decided to publish Santorum as a columnist, but isn't running my nationally syndicated column?

All kidding aside, this isn't, of course, about me (though the comparison, I think, is appropriate). It is about media bias. It shows just how far out of the way some newspaper owners will go to overrepresent conservative voices in the media. And yet, somehow, conservatives still claim the media is liberal.