January 29, 2008

Today's Front Pages Analysis

Even some tabloids in U.S. find space for president and pols

Today’s Page One stories for U.S. dailies are somewhat predictable — State of the Union address, Florida primary, Kennedy endorsements of Barack Obama for president — so we thought we might check some of the American tabloids (and tabloid-type dailies) to see if and how they are handling the obvious.

The East Bay Daily News in Berkeley, Calif., plays up local news but finds space on the cover page for a photo of President Bush, a tease for “The State of the Union is …” while adding, “Bush pleads for patience in Iraq during last annual address” with the story on Page 4. Nearby, The Examiner in San Francisco has a busy Page One that also includes a tease for coverage of the president’s “It’s the economy, Congress” message to be found inside. Down south, the OC Post in Santa Ana devotes much of Page One to a photo of the president issuing his “Call to action.”

The Rocky Mountain News in Denver plays up the coming U.S. Senate race in Colorado, but there is a skyline about “Bush’s final State of Union echoes first with economy worries, war.” Chicago Sun-Times has much political to offer — a “Welcome to Camelot” photo of Obama and the Kennedys at the top of the page, a photo of the president with the words “We can work it out,” a tease to an inside story headed “Shame on Clintons” and major play for the arrest of a former Obama fundraiser. Quick in Dallas has a busy Page One but a State of the Union tease makes the cut. The Citizens’ Voice in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., devotes the first page to local news but does tease to the Bush address. Fully half of the Times Herald-Record in Middletown, N.Y., is devoted to State of the Union coverage.

The New York City area is tabloid country. Newsday on Long Island has Bush above the nameplate but the big story is whether today might be the end of the Giuliani campaign. Daily News reports: “Ted Kennedy jumps on Barack bandwagon and kicks his old pals Hil & Bill on the way.” The New York Post whoops up “BAMALOT” with a photo and the report, “Ted hails Barack, rips Clintons.”

Gene Mater is a Freedom Forum media consultant.

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