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A Newspaper Has a Novel Strategy for Covering One Politician’s Falsehoods: Don’t

From Marisa Iati, writing for the Washington Post…

Ohio’s biggest newspaper is taking an unusual tack toward covering falsehoods from a U.S. Senate candidate: It doesn’t plan to do so at all.

The Plain Dealer in Cleveland said its journalists intend to ignore inaccurate statements from Republican Josh Mandel that they consider to be ploys for attention.

“Mandel is pretty much a nobody right now, a nobody begging for people to notice his Tweets a year ahead of the Senate primary,” Chris Quinn, the Plain Dealer’s editor, wrote in an opinion piece published Saturday. “Just because he makes outrageous, dangerous statements doesn’t mean it is news.”

Quinn’s decision is a marked departure from conventional journalistic wisdom that politicians’ statements inherently deserve coverage and that every story has at least two sides. Newsrooms across the country have increasingly reevaluated that approach because of President Donald Trump’s more than 30,000 false or misleading claims, many of which dominated the news cycle and helped him amass a following.

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