By Curtis Houck | August 17, 2016 | 5:43 PM EDT

MSNBC’s Hardball host Chris Matthews had always been a big admirer of now-former Democratic Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane, so he was naturally beside himself on Tuesday night as he gave a news brief on Kane being found guilty of nine criminal charges stemming from a series of leaks to a grand jury concerning a legal and political rival.

By Clay Waters | August 9, 2016 | 1:20 PM EDT

The Obama administration is once again riding to the rescue of U.S. Muslims persecuted by Republicans. That’s the takeaway from Monday’s lead National section story by Katie Shepherd (who claimed without evidence that "anti-Islamic rhetoric and discrimination surges this presidential election year"): “To Township, It’s a Zoning Issue. To Justice Dept., It’s Discrimination – The Federal Agency Emerges as a Bulwark For American Muslims.” The New York Times covered the controversy over the proposed Ground Zero mosque in similar positive fashion, while sliming critics of the project as Islamophobes.

By Tom Blumer | June 20, 2016 | 5:52 PM EDT

The establishment press is thrilled over the City of Philadelphia's enactment of a 1.5 cents-per-ounce "soda tax" last week. Monday morning, Mayor Jim Kenney signed the legislation which its City Council passed last week.

Especially unseemly is the virtual euphoria over how so-called "public health" advocates gained their long-sought foothold into using the tax system to dictate personal behavior over (eventually) any and all food and beverage products it doesn't like. Instead of making the "we know better" nanny-state arguments which really form the foundation of their effort, the press is applauding Mayor Kenney for, in the words of New York Times reporter Margot Sanger-Katz, portraying "the soft drink industry as a tantalizing revenue source that could be tapped to fund popular city programs, including universal prekindergarten."

By Tom Blumer | May 11, 2016 | 6:55 AM EDT

Ed Rendell, the chairman of this year's Democratic National Convention, stepped in it bigtime in a Sunday interview with billionaire businessman and radio talk show host John Catsimatidis. He got in even deeper trouble with supporters of candidate Bernie Sanders when he tried to explain himself.

Though there's plenty of hostility in the Republican Party these days, there's no shortage of it among Democrats either. Rendell's comment that supporters of Bernie Sanders "have to behave" has raised the vehement ire of the Vermont senator's supporters, but has drawn almost no establishment press attention.

By Tom Johnson | April 28, 2016 | 10:22 PM EDT

New York magazine’s Jonathan Chait admires Bernie Sanders’s willingness (eagerness?) to raise taxes so as to “finance the kind of social benefits American liberals would prefer.” That’s why Chait is disappointed that Sanders opposes Philadelphia’s proposed three-cents-per-ounce tax on sugar-sweetened drinks, revenue from which would fund citywide pre-kindergarten and other programs.

In a Tuesday post, Chait wrote that Sanders “has received justifiable credit for breaking the taboo on middle-class taxation and asking just why it is that Americans must be denied public services taken for granted elsewhere…But where does this leave his opposition to the soda tax? His position is strange and ironic because taxes on specifically defined, unhealthy goods has long been the loophole through which Democrats escape the pressure of their own no-taxes-on-the-middle-class vise…What’s more, the proceeds of the soda tax finance a vital liberal social goal (in this case, early education).”

By Tom Blumer | April 23, 2016 | 11:56 PM EDT

In an utterly amazing and totally unexpected coincidence, Verizon is reporting that there has been a spike in vandalism and sabotage against its facilities since workers went on strike on April 13. (That's sarcasm, folks.) Paul J. Gough at the Pittsburgh Business Times has reported the company's claim that "there have been more than two dozen cases of what it called sabotage to cables and its facilities in the week since tens of thousands of its employees went on strike."

Some other local TV stations and outlets have also covered the matter, but it's not national news at the Associated Press or other national outlets, even though the wire service has done several stories on the strike, and even though its scope — 39,000 union members in nine states and DC — is hardly inconsequential.

By Ken Shepherd | August 6, 2015 | 3:24 PM EDT

The top law-enforcement officer in the Keystone State, Democrat Kathleen Kane, is in trouble for allegedly abusing the powers of her office. Yet in briefly noting the story in their Cheat Sheet digest on Thursday, the Daily Beast omitted any reference to her party affiliation.

By Curtis Houck | July 29, 2015 | 8:53 PM EDT

ABC failed to cover on Wednesday’s World News Tonight the criminal indictment of Democratic Congressman Chaka Fattah (Penn.) on charges related to alleged racketeering and conspiracy that resulted in the misuse of campaign funds and federal grant money for his personal gain. Surprisingly, the CBS Evening News and NBC Nightly News covered the story and labeled Fattah as a Democrat in news briefs on the matter. In addition, NBC disclosed the fact that Fattah’s wife is a news anchor with the peacock network’s station in Philadelphia, NBC 10 (but neglected to note that she’s been placed on leave following Wednesday’s events).

By Tom Blumer | June 28, 2015 | 3:37 PM EDT

On Friday, Curtis Houck at NewsBusters reported that "the Harrisburg, PA newspaper The Patriot News announced that both they and their online site PennLive.com 'will very strictly limit op-Eds and letters to the editor in opposition to same-sex marriage.'"

As of three years ago, the newspaper claimed weekly circulation of 476,000. Its current hype to advertisers boasts of "500,000 unique visitors and 22 million page views each month." Faced with what quickly and obviously became a move with the potential to cause significant losses in readership, the paper abruptly reversed course Saturday morning.

By Curtis Houck | June 26, 2015 | 4:02 PM EDT

In light of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to make gay marriage legal nationwide, the Harrisburg, PA newspaper The Patriot News announced that both they and their online site PennLive.com “will very strictly limit op-Eds and letters to the editor in opposition to same-sex marriage.”

By P.J. Gladnick | March 17, 2015 | 10:47 PM EDT

Many of you probably saw the network news reports about the United Airlines flight yesterday that returned to Dulles International airport when a crazed passenger yelling something about Jihad was restrained by other passengers. What you might have seen only on local but not on national broadcasts was a crazed Pennsylvania State University professor who began ranting loony left slogans on a flight from Nicaragua to Miami last weekend. 

By Bill Donohue | October 2, 2014 | 2:05 PM EDT

The New York Times has a story today about the Diocese of Harrisburg's decision to ban high school boys from competing against girls in school wrestling. This is the second day in a row that the Times has covered this story, and there is nothing new of any substance in today's piece.
 
Today's news story on the Pennsylvania Catholic high school wrestling policy merited 978 words. By contrast, today's New York Times ran a story on Oslo withdrawing from a bid to host the 2022 winter Olympics that totaled 406 words. A story on Derek Jeter starting his own web forum was a mere 599 words.