Tea Party Lapdogs in MSM Give Sarah Palin Free Ride in Nashville

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Over at Media Matters, Eric Boehlert plays a little what-if game. What if liberals held a convention in Nashville and paid Al Gore $100,000 to speak, and the opening-night speaker was some crazy left-wing conspiracy theorist, would the media rough up Gore and demand that he answer for his association with this nutjob?

You betcha! But what happened when Sarah Palin spoke at the tea party convention the night after the Obama birther Joseph Farah spoke? The dreaded MSM, bane of conservatives' existence, gave Palin a free ride.

Bottom line: The birther movement embarrasses most conservatives. Yet even when they invite a birther nut to speak at their conference, the press still won't ask tough questions. Instead, journalists politely look away.

It didn't used to work that way. There's been a long media tradition of holding politicians accountable for their public associations, especially when they appear at conventions that feature fringe rhetoric from controversial speakers. Reporting on who politicians agree to share a stage with has always been considered not only fair game, but genuinely newsworthy.

It's just that in this instance, the press gave Palin a complete and unobstructed free ride, a free ride Al Gore never would have been afforded.

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