July 30, 2008

Today's Front Pages Analysis

Alaskan’s indictment, Alzheimer’s drug top news

From Alaska to Hawaii to Florida, the indictment of the longest-serving Republican U.S. senator was front-page news.

Senators don’t get indicted every day; The Daytona Beach (Fla.) News-Journal offered an Associated Press sidebar listing other senators who have suffered the same fate as Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens.

The Anchorage Daily News dedicated its entire front page to the story, with pieces on “What it means for the Senate race” and “An Alaska Icon” with our favorite subhead, “Whether pork or gravy, he brought billions of dollars to Alaska.”

Stevens faces re-election in November, and USA Today doesn’t go very far out on a limb with its headline “Senator’s indictment may hurt GOP.”

“Friend’s gifts could be Stevens’ downfall,” explained The Seattle Times.

The Honolulu Advertiser offered a local angle on how the indictment could affect Hawaii’s Sen. Daniel Inouye with “Indictment of Senate ally won’t kill Inouye’s clout.”

Back in the continental United States, a reader of New York’s Hoy need not understand Spanish to know that “Alarma” is not good news atop a photo of a sober New York Gov. David Paterson, detailing the state’s budget crisis.

A potential breakthrough in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease topped the news in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, which used an Associated Press graphic to show how the disease attacks nerve cells.

A historic moment in Congress got lead-story treatment in Memphis, Tenn.’s Commercial Appeal with “Slavery apology clears House.”

Packaging the news in a way that intrigues the time-pressed reader is an art and The Examiner — Baltimore wins today’s award with a photo of a rosary hanging from a mailbox, with an inset of a laughing family of four and the headline “Shrink says family was DEEPLY DISTURBED.”

A close runner-up was the Wyoming Tribune-Eagle in Cheyenne, with a photo of a computer keyboard and the headline “The toilet is probably cleaner than your keyboard.”

prhule@newseum.org Patty Rhule is a project editor at the Newseum.

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