In Blue Seattle, A Paper Goes Very Red

Seattle Times AdOver here on the left coast, you don’t get a lot more blue than Seattle. And for sure, it’s the bluest part of Washington State.

But the city’s only printed daily newspaper – the Seattle Times – has often thrown its editorial support behind Republican gubernatorial candidates, even though there hasn’t been a Republican governor in Washington since John Spellman, who was elected in 1980 and served one term. Predictably, the paper endorsed Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob McKenna.

But this week, the paper took the unprecedented step of actually taking out a full-page ad for McKenna. It’s an almost $80,000 independent expenditure.

The ad donation makes the Seattle Times is the third largest independent contributor to the McKenna campaign, after Our Washington and Stand for the Children WA PAC.


[Read the Storify]

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  • zephyr

    “Completely separate” my arse. They must really depend on people being stupid.

  • http://wiredpen.com KATHY GILL, Technology Policy Analyst

    Hi, Zephyr — I still want to believe that this was a bone-headed attempt to figure out a way to attract political advertising dollars. I know, I know … idealism running rampant.

  • Jim Satterfield

    There’s no such thing as completely separate. No management team of any media outlet should ever be donating to either side.

  • http://wiredpen.com KATHY GILL, Technology Policy Analyst

    Hi, Jim – that’s certainly the consensus among academics and readers — as well as most political pundits. The latest news — a State Representative has shared a letter from Seattle Times Co ad department that he says was sent to his legislative office, certainly a no-no since you’re not supposed to use state resources to run for re-election.

    I remain saddened by the entire thing.

  • http://wiredpen.com KATHY GILL, Technology Policy Analyst

    Updated. Oh,my. The two profiles don’t even have the same share buttons. :-/

  • http://wiredpen.com KATHY GILL, Technology Policy Analyst

    Ah. The Seattle Times search engine returns URLs with different patterns — the one it used for Inslee returns a page with limited share options.

    See this quote for my take on this:
    https://twitter.com/kegill/status/259422146982469632

  • StockBoyLA

    So if McKenna loses does that mean the “business side” of the Seattle Times will the staff protesting?

  • zephyr

    Hah! Good tweet.