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What News Gets Reported?

September 9, 2013

In reading the news on a daily basis, I find it interesting to see which stories are covered by which outlets. Different stories are considered “newsworthy” for many various reasons. However, I believe any news that is substantial should be covered by any given news outlet.

Several days ago, I found a story through the Huffington Post, which was first reported on by the New Hampshire Union Leader, about voting fraud. College student Sebastian Bradley from New Hampshire, who was attending college in Colorado at Colorado State University, was registered to vote in both states. The interesting twist about this story is that his father, Jeb Bradley, was running for the US House of Representatives during the same election in 2008.

Any case of voting fraud is a very serious situation, but something involving the son of a candidate who is running in the election makes it even more serious. Questions could be raised about if his father was in on the scheme, or if it was just an accident or a random coincidence. Jeb Bradley lost the election to his democratic challenger, but is still the Senate Majority leader in the New Hampshire State Senate.

As I began to browse the internet for other information about this story, I hit a little bit of a wall. I found this story reported on by other small newspapers in the states of New Hampshire and Colorado as well as some other news blogs and independent news websites, but I couldn’t find it anywhere else. I searched the websites of several of the major news networks, and found no stories on this. The story in the New Hampshire paper debuted on September 5th. That’s only four days ago, so this is a fairly new story even though the act in question took place five years ago.

Why did FOX, CNN, MSNBC, etc. not report on this story?

In my mind, anything involving voting fraud is a very serious offense. As American citizens, we have the right to vote. And, when someone compromises that, it’s a very serious situation.

One blog called News Corpse called this same thing to attention, and notes that it’s not the first time that a voting fraud story has gone unreported by the major news networks.

It calls into question what really is newsworthy? Are the major networks just focused on reporting something sensationalized? They cover other news stories, so why not this one? As an aspiring journalist, it disheartens me to see that these outlets failed to report the news.

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