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Progressive Politics in Minnesota, the Nation, and the World

LTE Writer Thinks A Story On Sexual Harassment Is Just Politics

Category: GOP House Republicans
Posted: 12/05/17 13:18, Edited: 12/05/17 13:19

by Dave Mindeman

Well, this was inevitable...

To the Editor (SunThisWeek):

For two out of the last three weeks, state Rep. Erin Maye Quade has received front page above the fold stories. This past week, the story was regarding sexual harassment at the Minnesota Capitol. I don't dispute that what happened to Maye Quade was wrong and inappropriate, nor do I dispute that it deserves front page above the fold coverage. However, I do draw some conclusions from the story. Conclusions not about Maye Quade, but about the pro-DFL slanted reporting by the new newspaper staff. Maye Quade appears to have been the only person interviewed for the story on sexual harassment. In the article, Maye Quade is quoted various times with critical opinions and remarks regarding GOP handling of the allegations, as well as, her view of Speaker of the House Kurt Daudt's reaction to reports of sexual harassment. Yet, the article never mentions even trying to obtain a statement from Speaker Daudt or any other local GOP legislators. What kind of journalism is that? It was a politically charged article by including Maye Quade's comments, yet only presented her opinion of how the two parties are handling the situation. It seems that the new staff at the newspaper is just another biased, voice piece for the DFL. While I don't expect much from a free newspaper, advertisers are paying for it. If this kind of "journalism" continues, I guess advertisers will have to consider if it is wise to spend their advertising dollars in one-sided political newspaper.

This particular letter writer seems to have missed the entire point - and obviously assumes that everything is just a partisan political stunt.

It is like this letter writer (and believe it or not, the writer is a "she" ), is thinking the local paper is some kind of Maye Quade/DFL mouthpiece to get some articles written about her in regard to the harassment issue.

I guess Maye Quade is a glutton for punishment that wants all these details of her personal life to be shouted out in megaphone style so all of her friends and neighbors will know about it.

The letter writer admits that what happened was wrong - she just doesn't like all the publicity about our representative (as if this is somehow like a "campaign ad"? Really?) Erin has no control over how the local paper is going to treat the article. I would say it probably is more newsworthy than the local fish market having a shortage on shrimp.

The letter writer believes that the article should have "more balance". What is not balanced? It is a story about what happened to Erin - not a political statement. The initial confrontation was with a Democratic Senator. Maye Quade responed to questions from the paper about what happened in regards to these incidents involving the House leadership - which is Republican at present. Maye Quade naturally would like more attention to these matters in the future and said as much.

The only thing involving Republicans (outside of the growing revelations about Tony Cornish that developed) was really about the "no action taken. Not that they necessarily had good options - but a "not aware of it" from Kurt Daudt would have added nothing to the story. And Daudt isn't exactly publicity happy about the subject.

And what is with the "politically charged" comment. Sure there is a political aspect to this because Maye Quade is a sitting legislator. But the story can be just as relevant in any work place, any where. The only thing politically charged about this issue is the letter writer's reaction to the article. When someone assumes a political motivation, especially in regards to how a woman was treated in the work place, then the letter writer should be examining her own motives - rather than the motives of anyone else.
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