Covering Larry Craig

It appears that the Larry Craig story isn’t over. The senator, a Republican from Idaho, is still the talk of TV and the Web after his guilty plea over an incident in an airport bathroom came to light. Craig is keeping the story going by keeping his options open, asserting that his statement that he “intends to resign” by the end of the month doesn’t mean that he will.

Here are a few observations on coverage of the Craig scandal on the Web, on television and in print:

ONLINE: This blaring headline at The Huffington Post offers a cliche with “worst nightmare.” The headline also editorializes by using this label. Any “worst nightmare” is an indicator of hyperbole, and it begs the reader to think of even worse nightmares. A headline on a story about a traffic jam, for example, calls it “every motorist’s worst nightmare.” Maybe, but I can think of worse things. In this case, the situation in Iraq is a “worse nightmare” for the GOP than a waffling senator from Idaho.

ON TV: Fox News specializes in confrontational interviewing, as seen on “Hannity & Colmes” and other programming. It’s important to spell the names of the interrogated correctly, of course. That didn’t happen here. The name of the man being interviewed is Mike Rogers, not Mike Rodgers. Who is Mike Rogers? This Washington Post profile of the influential blogger tells us, and the story spells his name correctly.

IN PRINT: The Star Tribune newspaper is still wondering how it was beaten on the Craig story. Roll Call had it first, even though the Minneapolis paper had the home-field advantage. (Craig was nabbed at the airport there.) The paper’s public editor tries to explain how the incident and Craig’s guilty plea were overlooked.