September 22, 2008

Today's Front Pages Analysis

Proposed solution to financial crisis rates Page One attention all over

The bailout of U.S. financial institutions, as proposed by Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr., coupled with congressional Democrats coming up with their own terms to end the crisis, is Page One news for dailies across the country. Indeed, we thought that we would check some of the smaller newspapers in our exhibit.

The Dothan Eagle in Alabama focused on the congressional problems with headlines noting “Complicating the bailout” and “Paulson resists calls from Democrats to add more help for households,” The Tribune in San Luis Obispo, Calif., reports in its off-lead “Tax funds flashpoint in bailout debate,” the Fort Collins Coloradoan, noting time being critical, squares off “Fed urges quick action,” while the Star-Banner in Ocala, Fla., leads with “Paulson: No delay on bailout.”

Moving to middle America, the Journal Star in Peoria, Ill., and the Quad-City Times in Davenport, Iowa, along with The Hutchinson (Kan.) News, play up the need for “quick” or “fast” action. The St. Cloud Times in Minnesota banners “Fed OKs banks’ status change,” noting that “Finance giants now able to create new financial entities.” The Courier in Findlay, Ohio, leads with “Quick action urged on $700 billion bailout plan.”

In New England, the Cape Cod Times in Hyannis, Mass., tells us, “‘Mother of all bailouts’ pushed,” while the Bangor Daily News in Maine uses a quiet “Paulson pushes $700B bailout” headline.

It’s much the same no matter where you go.

In Texas, the Killeen Daily Herald also runs with “Mother of all handouts,” the Bozeman Daily Chronicle in Montana has as its off-lead “Paulson urges quick action on bailout,” while The Daily Times in Farmington, N.M., has Paulson at the bottom of the page while playing up the local situation with “City set for financial crisis.” The Tri-City Herald in Kennewick, Wash., pins the financial crisis to the election with “Campaigns scramble for economic advice,” The Daily Progress in Thomas Jefferson’s preferred city of Charlottesville, Va., reports on Paulson’s push for urgent action, as does the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle in upstate New York. In Pennsylvania, the Erie Times-News uses a word one doesn’t see that often, leading with “Haste urged on debt bailout.”

There are other stories today, but nothing really tops the financial crisis, the proposed solution and the counter-proposals.

Gene Mater is a Freedom Forum media consultant.

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