Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Post edit page and Fenty

The Washington Post editorial page, usually an ally of Mayor Fenty, used surprisingly strong language against him Wednesday:
MAYOR ADRIAN M. Fenty (D) must think that D.C. residents are so dimwitted that they will buy any excuse for his not showing up to debate D.C. Council Chairman Vincent C. Gray (D) on education. Or maybe he just doesn't care. Either way, his latest misstep is another troubling example of the haughty approach to governing that is, in large measure, why Mr. Fenty finds himself in political peril.


If this were an isolated incident, it would be forgotten quickly as just that -- one small incident. But it seems to fit into a pattern of inconsiderate actions.
Ultimately, when it comes to an endorsement, the most conventional outcome, despite editorials like this, would certainly be for them to endorse Fenty. I make no predictions.

But here's how I think endorsements usually work: if the endorsement is conventional, expected, then it's not news when it happens, and not that many people care. It's the unexpected endorsements that the pundits (rightly) make into news. Think the Post and Creigh Deeds in the primary, or the Des Moines Register's 2004 endorsement of Edwards.

Fenty gains little if the Post ultimately endorses him; Gray potentially gains a lot if he gets the nod.


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