Now is the time when we juxtapose, Small Dead Animals-style:
Rekha Basu, the outspoken Des Moines Register columnist who has written frequently about the Iowa Senate race, says her son’s paid work for Democratic candidate Bruce Braley has no bearing on her paper’s endorsement process.
Basu, who describes herself as “very progressive,” has written several columns on the Iowa Senate race and is highly critical of Republican candidate Joni Ernst. Her most recent column, a wide-ranging critique of Ernst and her policies, is titled “This isn’t the Iowa woman we should elect.”
Basu’s latest column mentions that her son, Romen Borsellino, is employed by the Braley campaign. Pay stubs reviewed by POLITICO show that, on and off for the last year, Borsellino has received a biweekly salary of $998, translating to roughly $2,000 a month.
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“I’ve been open about my son’s work for the campaign,” Basu wrote later in the email. “I wrote about it in my column Sunday. Readers who have followed me for more than two decades know my views to be very progressive (my detractors call them socialist) on reproductive choice, immigration, gun control, environmental safety, the Iraq war, poverty and class issues, among others. I don’t think there’s a single issue on which they align with Ernst’s, although I would love to see an Iowa woman elected to Congress someday.”
Rick Green, the Register’s president and publisher, similarly told POLITICO, “Any affiliation that Basu’s son has with Braley’s campaign is not a factor in our endorsement process. Rekha is not a member of our editorial board.”
—Dylan Byers, The Politico, today.
Chicago Sun-Times reporter Dave McKinney resigned from the paper just days after the Free Beacon reported that his wife’s political firm was working to defeat Republican Bruce Rauner, who had been at the center of several critical reports by McKinney.
In a letter Wednesday to Sun-Times Chairman Michael Ferro, McKinney tendered his resignation.
“It is with great sadness today that I tender my immediate resignation from the Sun-Times,” McKinney wrote on his personal blog.
While the reporter denied the allegations made by the Rauner campaign that his wife Ann Liston’s work conflicted with his political reporting, McKinney still decided to leave the paper after being placed on temporary leave.
Public records and other information obtained by the Free Beacon’s Adam Kredo connected Liston’s firm, Adelstein/Liston, to the Illinois Freedom Political Action Committee, which is backed by pro-Quinn public employee unions and has targeted Rauner throughout the 2014 campaign.
The Rauner campaign said McKinney had a clear conflict of interest and maintained that it could have impacted his work on a controversial story that accused the Republican of threatening a former colleague.
McKinney admitted that his wife does Democratic political work, but denied she is working to defeat Rauner.
—“Sun-Times Reporter Resigns After Free Beacon Report,” the Washington Free Beacon, yesterday.
As Glenn Reynolds has noted, ”Think of the [MSM] as Democratic operatives with bylines and you won’t be far wrong.”
Related: Speaking of which, “New York Times Tries to Discredit NRA on Bruce Braley’s Gun Control Stance.”