Cam Winton blasts MinnPost's coverage of mayoral debate
But parts of her piece -- "Short answers, long agenda for the Great Minneapolis Mayoral Debates" -- read more like commentary than reporting. To take one example, at one point Harris writes that "you have to hand it to the candidates. Through 10 rounds of questioning, they had to muster specifics about their programs -- or enough blather to fudge, brag about accomplishments, defend whatever they'd done in the past and add touching details about their personal lives -- all the while perched on high chairs under bright lights with someone yelling 'Stop' in their faces."
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The tone of the piece didn't sit well with candidate Cam Winton, who, in a letter to Harris and MinnPost editorial officials, characterized her writing as "smug, lazy commentary masquerading as journalism." Ouch!
Here's an excerpt from Winton's letter to the editor (and reporter):
First, I'm sure you'll find this statement maddeningly self-assured, but your attempted critique of me falls flat given that "maddenly" is not a word. [In the original version of her piece, Harris apparently described Winton as "maddenly self-assured."]Winton's critique was apparently heard loud and clear by MinnPost, as Harris's report was appended with this correction:
Second, rather than spending your column inches on twice criticizing my style -- and yes, when taking on the DFL insider machine, one must indeed be self-assured -- you might have taken the time to report my positions accurately:-- I support putting cameras on officers. They're already in police cars. The Southwest Journal reported my comments accurately: http://tinyurl.com/ktwt29vIn summary, I welcome substantive critiques, feedback, and straight-up criticism. I've received such from just about every other reporter covering this race -- and that coverage helps me to be a better candidate, which in turn creates benefits for the populace.
-- Streetcars would cost $40 million per mile, not $40 million total.
-- It's not accurate to describe my position as "buses...are good enough," as you did. Rather, I've emphasized repeatedly that I support enhancing our existing bus lines by building heated bus enclosures and installing pay machines in the heated bus enclosures. Here's prior coverage -- but more importantly, I said the same things in the forum that you were ostensibly covering...
I have no patience, though, for smug, lazy commentary masquerading as journalism. Accordingly, I hope your next effort will live up to the standards that MinnPost claims to set for itself.
This report contained several errors concerning the positions of Minneapolis mayoral candidate Cam Winton. In terms of police oversight, Winton said he is in favor of putting cameras on officers. They are already in police cars. Winton supports enhanced bus service, rather than streetcars, which he said would cost $40 million per mile. The one-word responses of several candidates also were incorrectly reported. They are listed correctly above at the end of the story.-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.