Scott Gessler dubbed rock star by NPR, but he prefers being called Honey Badger

Categories: Media, Politics

scott gessler photo cropped small.JPG
Scott Gessler.
Colorado Secretary of State Scott Gessler is a controversy magnet, with many progressive figures taking his name in vain. Example: a blistering October critique by MSNBC's Rachel Maddow. But today, NPR, a news outfit frequently accused of liberal bias, sent the mega-conservative Gessler an audio love letter in which he's implicitly dubbed a rock star, as well as a honey badger. Hear it below.

The piece, by Colorado Public Radio's Megan Verlee, doesn't go into detail about what Gessler critics see as his efforts to suppress voters unlikely to cast ballots for Republicans via photo-ID requirements and the like. Rather, it focuses on the growing importance of the office nationwide due to the growing perception that in a close election, a secretary of state can tip the outcome his party's way. Says one expert, "The decade following the 2000 presidential election made secretaries of state the rock stars of the election world."

Verlee uses Gessler to embody this assertion, and he hardly shies away from the characterization. When asked about his nickname of Honey Badger, after a viral video that's spawned a slew of tie-ins pivoting on the phrase "Honey badger don't care," he embraces it, saying, "If you look at honey badgers, they're very independent animals. They're very fierce. People don't mess with them, and they usually win their fights."

Actually, Gessler's ratio of victories to defeats isn't quite at Tom Brady levels. But there's no denying he's good at badgering. Listen to the NPR package below.

Follow and like the Michael Roberts/Westword Facebook page.

More from our Politics archive: "Scott Gessler's suit against Denver County for inactive-voter mailings shameful, says ACLU."

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Peter Carsenna
Peter Carsenna

Looks like Westword reworked 2 blog post for "Gessler" into one and dialed back some of the language. Explanation please? Who bitched? NPR/CPR? Gessler? Both? Also, the comments for the other article are lost. Why don't you post them to this combined article?

Peter Carsenna
Peter Carsenna

Trey Grayson: "...I believe our elections are better administered..." (Research support?)Trey Grayson: "...the partisanship is a byproduct of that..." (Evidentiary support?)Trey Grayson: "'s the sign of our times..." (Idiotic bullet-point support?)

Verlee lets these opinions and catch phrases slide without asking for any support from the interviewee -- ZERO. Why is this so? Earlier in her story, she let's other interviewees suggest that partisanship is antecedent to process -- that partisans control the office in order to implement policies based upon ideology. So, which is it?

Don't hold your breath waiting for public radio to answer that question for you. They don't know how. They'd rather opinion-balance. NPR (CPR) and the NYT have the same problem. They forgot how journalism is done. Here is a great example of their cluelessness.

Should The Times Be a Truth Vigilante?http://publiceditor.blogs.nyti...

But hey, CPR got one of its stories picked up by the national network. Look for Ms. Verlee working in "The Show" soon. This is how minor-leaguers get to "the dance."

Sean Carpenter
Sean Carpenter

Fake fairness and balance? Check.He said/she said objectivity? Check.Elite-centered perspective? Check.Irrelevant political angle during an election year? Check.NPR/CPR uglies (so-called liberals) fawning over a hunkie Gooper? Check.Colorado Blathers painful irrelevance bores listeners to tears? Check.

Robert Chase
Robert Chase

NPR does represent a certain tightly-circumscribed and reactionary sort of liberalism, and this piece reflects its increasing lack of journalistic discernment -- "balance" in this context does not mean editors selecting stories because they feel they will appeal to one group or another, but rather in editors demanding that stories present both sides and that reporters consider all relevant facts.  Verlee describes Gessler, allows other to, and allows the partisan hack to speak for himself, but no critic is permitted so much as a word.  "Gessler has been sued", but listeners are not informed that a court found him to be in violation of the Law -- I consider the ommission of this fact damning.  This report does a disservice to CPR, to NPR, and to Colorado.

Ellen Dumm
Ellen Dumm

It's hard to believe much of anything he says - he has misrepresented data and his "studies" are so biased and full of holes, he has very little credibility. He claims he was upfront about his issues in his campaign - but he wasn't. How can we trust that he'll run a fair election in 2012? 

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