A few excerpts from the MSNBC list of journalists who donated to candidates. First up, since when does not knowing the rules equal “thinking as a lawyer?”
(D) ABC News, Mary Fulginiti, “Primetime” correspondent, Hollywood, Calif., $500 to Gov. Bill Richardson, Democratic presidential candidate, 2007. Before she joined ABC in November 2006, lawyer Fulginiti gave $6,000 to Democratic candidates.
ABC forbids political activity by journalists.
“A friend asked me to contribute” to Richardson, Fulginiti said. “This is not a reflection of my political views. Look, I’ve made a mistake here. I’m a legal analyst — this is all new to me. I have been politically active in the past. This is when I was just starting out at ABC. I was still thinking as a lawyer.”
And I liked this one on Fox News:
(D) Fox News Channel, Codie Brooks, researcher for Brit Hume’s “Special Report,” $300 to Senate campaign of Harold Ford Jr., Tennessee Democrat, in March 2006, $200 more in June, and $2,100 more in September.
Brooks, who said her family is friendly with Ford’s, said she raised much of the $2,600 from friends — it wasn’t her money alone. “A lot of Fox employees have contributed to Democratic candidates. I know I’m not the only one.”
But the best response is Gideon Yago’s of MTV:
(D) MTV News, Gideon Yago, “Choose or Lose” presidential correspondent, $200 to Democratic presidential candidate Wesley Clark in January 2004; $500 to America Coming Together, which campaigned against President Bush, in September 2004; $250 to the Democratic National Committee in September 2004; $250 to VoteVets, which is running ads against the president’s handling of the war, in March 2006, and $250 to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee in October 2006. He said he is no longer at MTV News.
Gideon Yago, raw:
“I don’t understand. Things that I do as a private citizen?
“We’re not a traditional news network in the sense of NBC or Fox or CBS.
“We’re sensitive about equal time or fairness. We’re non-biased.
“I mean, what the f—, man?
“I came back from doing coverage in Iraq and was very moved by what I saw. I was never told by my boss or anyone that we couldn’t give to a campaign.
“I’m not a journalist now. Writing fiction.
“I would never qualify what we do as journalism. Ninety percent of what we did was simple identification, after 9/11: Who is Rumsfeld? Who is Colin Powell? Who is Al Qaeda?
“I try to call it as you see it.
“After my second trip to Iraq in 2004, I felt the conventional news media was not doing a good enough job of conveying the horrors and the failures of the war in Iraq.
“At 18 I was a registered Republican. At 24, I was a registered Democrat.
“I tried very hard — our job was not an indoctrination process — I tried to be as professional as possible whenever possible.
“We were a non-traditional news outlet. We were nonpartisan.
“”OK, I’ve been rebuked. Thank you for spanking me in public.
“Do you hand in all your rights as a public citizen when you do this?
“I mean — who’s your editor? I’m going to call him right now.”