If you ignore all the conservatives at the Washington Post there are no conservatives at the Washington Post
Washington Post ombudsman Patrick Pexton discovers that every writer for the Washington Post is a bleeding heart liberal:
One aspect of The Post that particularly irks conservatives is the columnists who appear in print and online in news positions (as opposed to those on the editorial and op-ed pages and the online Opinions section). With the exception of Dan Balz and Chris Cillizza, who cover politics in a nonpartisan way, the news columnists almost to a person write from left of center.
Ezra Klein of Wonkblog comes out of the Democratic left, fills in for Rachel Maddow and Ed Schultz on MSNBC and sometimes appears in the printed Post on the front page.
Steven Pearlstein, who covers business and also appears occasionally on the front page; Walter Pincus on national security; Lisa Miller of the On Faith blog; Melinda Henneberger of She the People; Valerie Strauss, the education blogger; plus the three main local columnists — Robert McCartney, Petula Dvorak and Courtland Milloy — all generally write from a progressive perspective, readers say. (So does Dana Milbank, who works for the Opinions section but writes a column that appears on Page A2 twice a week.)
Is it any wonder that if you’re a conservative looking for unbiased news — and they do; they don’t want only Sean Hannity’s interpretation of the news — that you might feel unwelcome, or dissed or slighted, by the printed Post or the online version? And might you distrust the news when it’s wrapped in so much liberal commentary?
So there are two “news columnists” who cover politics in a nonpartisan way and ten apparently partisan progressive “news columnists.” What is a news columnist? According to Pexton, it is a columnist who appears in print and online in a news position and not on the op-ed pages, whatever that means. Ezra Klein is a news columnist. So are Dana Milbank, Steven Pearlstein, Robert McCartney, and Courtland Milloy. Just to make sure that Pexton was correct in describing them as columnists who don’t appear on the editorial and op-ed pages and the online Opinions section, I decided to look at the online Opinions section. I was in for quite a nasty shock!
Either the Washington Post hired different opinion writers named Klein, McCartney, Milbank, Milloy, and Pearlstein (a little hint for people who didn’t click the link: they didn’t!) or Patrick Pexton is spouting nonsense.
What I see on this list is…a mix of left-leaning and right-leaning writers! Yet Pexton saw fit to write a post decrying the pernicious liberal infection of the Washington Post (“If The Post wants to wrap its news in commentary, fine, but shouldn’t some of those voices then be conservative?”) without bothering to mention George Will, Marc Thiessen, Charles Krauthammer, Michael Gerson, or future Romney White House Press Secretary Jennifer Rubin. For the uninitiated, Rubin was hired by the Post as a conservative blogger after Dave Weigel was fired when revelations that he wasn’t actually conservative enough and he’d referred to his fellow Ron Paul voters as “Paultards” led the Post’s editors to conclude that he “was no longer objective enough to cover his beat.” The notably objective Jennifer Rubin was recently seen arguing that the Romney campaign is doing really well lately (really!) but isn’t doing as well as they could be (which would be even better than really really good) because they are afraid to say mean things about Barack Obama.
To summarize, Pexton argues that the Post’s news columnists (who don’t write opinion articles) are biased liberals based on a few people whose writings can be found by clicking on the “Opinions” page (and one, Dana Milbank, who can be found on the “Left-Leaning” opinions page). He does not include any of the numerous conservative opinion writers as news columnists, leading him to conclude that the Washington Post is hopelessly lacking conservative voices.
And he’s got a real point! When you count on the liberal writers at the Washington Post and don’t count all the conservative writers, it turns out that there aren’t actually any conservative writers at the Post.