The Pete Stark Chronicles
If you woke up this morning and decided it might be a good day to antagonize your local newspaper, take a deep breath and think about it first. The San Francisco Chronicle just outlined three reasons why it's a bad idea.
The Bay Area newspaper ran another front-page story on Rep. Pete Stark's, D-Calif., stumbling bid for reelection Friday, titled "Pete Stark's burned bridges have cost him." Stark has tripped up a few times in his race for the East Bay's 15th District this cycle, and lately, the paper across the San Francisco Bay seems to be chronicling those incidents with particular glee.
It's the third time in a little over a month that a story with bad news for Stark ran on A1 in the Chronicle. The 20-term incumbent was only mentioned in the paper five times in that period, according to a Nexis search of the newspaper's archives. One of those stories was about former Rep. Ellen Tauscher's endorsement of Democratic challenger Eric Swalwell -- not exactly a surprising development given that Swalwell interned for Tauscher once upon a time and is running a campaign staffed by veterans of Tauscher's election efforts. (Both Stark and Swalwell advanced in California's top-two congressional primary, and they will face off in an intra-party fight in November's general election.)
Stark is no stranger to the newspaper, but the front-page treatment has picked up since Stark picked on one of its columnists in a May editorial board interview. The congressman falsely accused conservative opinion columnist Debra Saunders of contributing to Swalwell during the interview.