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Retire David Broder Today (Why Oh Why Can't We Have a Better Press Corps?/Washington Post Department)

Greg Sargent watches yet more journamalism from David Broder, who trashes the New York Times's Adam Nagourney and Megan Thee for being insufficiently obsequious to today's Republican Party:

Horses Mouth March 15, 2007 09:08 AM: Tuesday's Times story was a fairly straightforward report on a big poll the paper did that was full of bad numbers for the GOP. It was entitled, "G.O.P. Voters Voice Anxieties on Party's Fate." Broder didn't like this -- not one little bit. In response, he attacked the Times, thundering:

Months before the first votes are cast in the campaign of 2008, some in the media are conducting last rites for the Republicans. The rush to bury the GOP is as hasty as it is premature.... The headline atop Page 1 of Tuesday's New York Times read, "GOP Voters Voice Anxieties on Party's Fate." It sounded like a death knell for the party that has held the White House for 26 of the past 38 years. But the evidence was thin.... I would say that the problem seems to lie in the eyes of those political observers who are impatient to judge an election that is many months, not weeks, away...the only thing we know for certain about the 2008 election is that we know none of the vital facts that will determine its outcome.

Broder... said the [Times's] rush to judgment was premature. But... guess what Broder didn't tell his readers... the Times piece... aired exactly the same point that Broder did -- that it would be premature to use such data for a long-term prognosis -- not once, but twice. It said this:

And by a 20-point margin, respondents said that if the election were held today they would vote for an unnamed Democrat for president rather than a Republican. Such questions are hardly predictive of the outcome of an election so far away, but they do offer an insight into the health of the party today.

And it also quoted someone else making the same point:

Republican strategists said they were not surprised about the poll's findings, though they said Republicans were too pessimistic in concluding now that the party could not win in 2008. "People should be concerned"... said Glenn Bolger, a Republican strategist. "But if you go back in time to 1991, the Democrats had a lot of the same concerns, both about the candidates running and their possibility of winning. And it turned out pretty well for them."

Broder... snip-snip-snipped those inconvenient facts away. Snip!...

[W]hat... enraged Broder so much about this piece[?] One guess might be that in Broder's Bipartisan House of Worship no one can whisper aloud that one party is doing far better than the other.... [But] when the GOP was dominant... the priests didn't seem to mind so much back then.