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Erik Wemple
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Posted at 07:13 PM ET, 01/09/2012

Santorum a media creation? Whatever.


Santorum — please keep taking him seriously. (RICK WILKING - REUTERS)
Howard Kurtz of CNN’s Reliable Sources addresses the question of whether the media hypes (former) underdogs like Rick Santorum in furtherance of a good story. The argument was framed by Jacob Weisberg in Slate magazine, who wrote that the media has an interest in keep the race as tight as possible:

The straight-laced front-runner winning Iowa and New Hampshire before securing the nomination early on does not count as a compelling narrative. Hence the media’s pretense of taking seriously a succession of nonviable candidates with outlandish views. Rick Santorum is not, under any circumstances, going to be the GOP nominee.

In the clip above, Kurtz asks National Review’s Robert Costa if there’s a “false drama” in the pursuit. Costa: “False drama! OK, but Rick Santorum is raising a million dollars a day. He had a surprise finish in the Iowa caucuses. Let’s look at the results. I think we’re able to cover these stories, especially Rick Santorum, and say this is a compelling news story. . .

Advantage Costa.

Anyone who comes within eight votes of winning the Iowa caucuses after advocating for the “perfect way that a sexual union should happen” — he must be taken seriously. Anyone who comes within eight votes of winning the Iowa caucuses after once mentioning homosexuality in close proximity to a description of beastiality — he must be taken seriously. Anyone who comes within eight votes of winning the Iowa caucuses after once drawing a cultural connection between Boston-area liberalism and the Catholic Church sexual abuse scandal — he must be taken seriously.

Cover this individual and everything he utters, even if the resulting plume of articles and videos looks like hype. Put as many mics to his mouth as we can scare up. That way, we’ll never again have to debate what he did or did not say.

By  |  07:13 PM ET, 01/09/2012

 
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