Washington Post ombudsman Andrew Alexander wrote extensively this week about The Post’s failure to cover the ongoing controversy surrounding the New Black Panthers case. A given reason for the lack of coverage?
“National Editor Kevin Merida, who termed the controversy ‘significant,’ said he wished The Post had written about it sooner. The delay was a result of limited staffing and a heavy volume of other news on the Justice Department beat, he said.”
Good thing the heavy volume of news on the DOJ beat didn’t keep The Post from chronicling the First Lady’s “pep talk” to Justice workers in late June:
“Whoops and hollers rang out in the (Justice Department’s) Great Hall as Obama — wearing a purple dress and a broad grin — took the stage. Hundreds of employees, who had started lining up three hours earlier, held up cellphone cameras and cheered from a balcony.
“(Holder) then called Obama ‘the rock of our nation’ and ‘a good friend of the United States’ Department of Justice.’
“The first lady returned the compliments, saying Holder has been ‘an outstanding attorney general’ and ‘a phenomenal support not just to the president but to me personally.’”
That recap, “Michelle Obama rallies Justice Dept. workers,” was published June 23.
More to the point, Todd Zywicki at the Volokh Conspiracy dug up an even better one (penned by the same reporter, incidentally): “Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division steps up enforcement” which ran June 4, on A3, without a single mention of the New Black Panthers case.
For some calendar perspective: On July 6, J. Christian Adams testified before the U.S. Civil Rights Commission. The Post published its first story in the 2010 calendar year (“2008 voter-intimidation case against New Black Panthers riles the right“) about the case on July 15.