Analysis of the NW Herald’s Analysis of the Melissa Bean Loss to Joe Walsh

A subhead in the 2,400-word analysis starting on the front page of the Sunday Northwest Herald made me smile.

It read,

“Banking on Bean”

Although probably not the copy editor’s intention, it reminded me of how much money that incumbent Democrat Melissa Bean had managed to obtain from the banking, insurance and real estate industries in five+ years in office.

Contributions from Melissa Bean's top five industries.

This was an Establishment versus Outsider election.

The donations show that.

Melissa Bean got most of her money from Political Action Committees; Joe Walsh got most of his money from individuals.

Look at the percentage of PAC contributions for Bean and Walsh. 62% for Bean, a minuscule 2% for Walsh.

The most astounding conclusion offered in the NWH’s analysis of Melissa Bean’s disastrous campaign was that Joe Walsh somehow benefited from receiving no assistance from the State or National Republican Parties or their deep-pocketed allies.

Oh, really?

Whatever happened to money being “the mother’s milk” of campaigns?

The campaign was also a litmus test contest on abortion policy between those who favor no restrictions and those who disagree strongly with that position.

I think the Daily Herald’s and NW Herald’s long-standing animus toward virtually everyone who takes a Pro-Life position explains so, so much of the negative coverage of Joe Walsh’s campaign.

No mention of that issue in the article.

No mention of the gender difference and how women typically have about a five percentage point advantage in the suburbs. That the “plus” of being a woman on the ballot didn’t materialize wasn’t mentioned in the article.

The incumbent versus non-incumbent difference was addressed.

That Bean acted like Republican Phil Crane when Bean beat him was addressed, but missing was that Bean won her second time around.

The first time the score was 95,275 to 70,626. Not even close.

Living outside the 8th Congressional District by a wee bit thanks to subsequent reapportionment requested by Crane, Bean won the second time out by 139,792 to 130,601 after a storm of money was pumped into her campaign.

One outside group pumped in about three-quarters of a million dollars.

To work the precincts, Congressman Rahm Emmauel sent in Chicago “Hired Truck” guys. At least that’s the word I got. If so, that would perhaps explain the really bad votes Bean took after Barack Obama took office as President.

I should point out that Walsh’s initially living outside the district was emphasized in the article without a mention that Bean has had over six years to move into the 8th District, but has not done so.

The contest was also between a liberal and a conservative.

Everyone knows which was which, but the NWH article does not contain the word “liberal.”

Liberal issues she supported are mentioned, but not the “L” word.

What seems so, so strange is that the word “conservative” is not used to describe Walsh. It’s only use is in the phrase “fiscally conservative,” referring to Bean.

How someone who voted for the stimulus package could be described thusly is beyond me.

Adequate coverage is given to Bean’s refusing to meet with the public.  I though the NWH gave that aspect of her campaign too little attention prior to the election–especially considering how Bean hammered Phil Crane with the same criticism when she won in 2004.

How such rich irony was not mentioned every time Bean ducked an event is beyond me.

But, of course, the NWH favored Bean’s re-election.

It is pretty obvious that Green Party candidate Bill Scheurer played a role in Joe Walsh's election.

Completely missing is the role Green Party candidate Bill Scheurer played in electing Walsh.  He certainly got more than the margin of victory.

Campaign techniques like the YouTube pitches and Walsh’s email list are mentioned, but not teased out in this the longest article I think I have ever seen in the NWH. Walsh, by the way, had 4,000 people on his email list.

Bean’s TV ads were mention–too late in the campaign to define Walsh–but no one was found to speculate that they may have helped those who wanted to support the national Republican Party agenda to discover Walsh’s candidacy.

There are marvelous interviews telling how Walsh went looking for a congressional district in which to run and how one first-time volunteer was stimulated to work full-time for Walsh after she voted for Obama Care after he advised her not to do so.

You have read in both papers, led by the Daily Herald, all the negative information that could be found on Joe Walsh.

Mike Tryon

The Democratic Party chairman in McHenry County was found for a comment, but Mike Tryon was not.  Strange to interview the losing side, but not the one that won.

A nice catch was that former CBS Channel Two President Joe Ahern contributed to Bean.

Have you ever read the extent of Melissa Bean’s “business” background?

Didn’t think so.

“Catman” summed up the analysis this way:

It was a very disappointing article, simply rehashing everything that has already been written in the media and on blogs.

As far as a side-by-side comparison “analysis” the article only compared a couple precincts, again showing the Herald’s lack of doing any real homework and just wasting valuable newsprint space.

They could have at least admitted that they, too, missed the Walsh groundswell that was happening right before their (Bean blinders) eyes.

“You may want to know” commented under the same post,

The NWH article could have been titled

“Bean Blinders and the Bean Bunker.”

How appropriate that Bean didn’t want to be quoted directly for the article.

= = = = =

This article also might be of interest:

Northwest Herald Promises “Analysis” of Joe Walsh-Melissa Bean Contest

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *