Washington Examiner Won’t Give up Pretense of Not Being Conservative

Fox News and the Washington Examiner are teaming up to co-sponsor an August 11 debate in Iowa.

Interesting. The Examiner can spend X amount of money to co-sponsor a presidential debate but they can’t hire a White House reporter with experience who can actually cover stories like the death of Osama Bin Laden? Sure, there’s something to be said for finally embracing yourself just as you are. So congrats for finally announcing to the world with a Fox News bromance that they are conservative. But between the debate and their kooky “Freedom isn’t Free” campaign they sure are pissing away a lot of their money that could be spent more directly on their employees. Examiner employees: Are you happy with how money is being spent at your newspaper?

We asked Examiner Editor Stephen Smith three questions, which he answered all in one. The questions were: 1. So does this mean you all are finally admitting that the paper leans right? 2. Would you have done this debate had it been MSNBC or CNN or another network? 3. How much does it cost to co-sponsor a debate like this? Even roughly?

We’re told a debate like this could run a newspaper in the ballpark of $150,000. Smith responded swiftly, but wouldn’t comment on the price tag. He said: “Our paper is straight down the middle in its news columns, and leans to the right in editorials and commentary. We would have been pleased to co-sponsor a debate with another network, but the idea first came up with Fox and we were impressed with the caliber of their news team — a judgment born out by the way Fox handled the Republican debate in Greenville back in May. As you may imagine, details of our financial participation are private.”

But an employee who left recently said Smith makes no pretenses about his conservative bent, especially at the office: “The only news station Steve has on in his office all day is Fox News. I’ve never seen him have anything else on there. Not a chance they’d partner MSNBC if the opportunity arose. They hate non-conservatives.”