Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Polis at Netroots Nation event: We killed the Rocky (hee-hee)!

Plunkett of the Post:
We’re more than a little puzzled by a report that tech-savvy Congressman Jared Polis boasted over the weekend that new media killed the Rocky Mountain News.

Polis, D-Boulder, said as keynote speaker at Netroots Nation in Westminster: “We killed the Rocky Mountain News. … Long live new media.”

Watching the Rocky pass was deeply painful to us here at The Post. We can’t imagine anyone taking any glee in that venerable institution’s demise. . . .

And if newsrooms and opinion pages like ours are worth killing, then why did Polis come to The Post seeking our endorsement?

Is Polis singling out the Rocky, which had a reputation as the conservative paper in town? Is that smart, even for a Democrat? He wrote an op-ed piece recently for the Wall Street Journal, and that’s also considered a conservative organ.

Don’t we still want a healthy debate in this country?
Polis (probably) responds in mealy-mouthed (how unexpected) fashion, and Plunkett quotes from the damning audio of the event, noting, "and remember, 200+ Coloradans just lost their jobs."

Update: apology, craven:
Rep. Jared Polis released the following statement this afternoon, apologizing for remarks he made over the weekend that new media "killed" the Rocky Mountain News. "I apologize to the entire Rocky Mountain News family and anyone who was offended by my recent remarks." the Boulder Democrat said in a release. "I did not mean to offend nor to show anything less than a strong sense of remorse for the loss of the Rocky. Like many Colorado residents, I grew up reading the Rocky Mountain News and its demise and the loss of over 200 jobs is a major blow to our community, especially in these troubled times."
Update II: Plunkett plunks Polis; Crummy has more.

Update II: Poynter Online picked up the Post's story, and has several others on the Rocky's closing, including the story behind the video the paper posted of its own demise, and the tidbit (from HuffPo) that the Rocky's website traffic nearly tripled in its last couple of days. Maybe they should have tried the old furniture store ruse of constantly going out of business. Everything must go!

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