Obama Criticizes Clinton for NAFTA
Obama criticized Clinton's support of NAFTA and other free-trade agreements during a speech for a chapter of the United Auto Workers of America today. The AP covered it extensively. I'm interested in how free-trade became the focus of the story.
It seems like the first thing that set it up was the context. Obama was speaking to a chapter of the UAW, jobs are obviously the focus of unions. Secondly, Clinton has taken some flack for her husbands support of these trade agreements so there's some sort of history. This last point also gives the opportunity to quote Edwards, who has been very vocal critic of Clinton's connection to the "establishment" in Washington. Third, the writer is then able to go to the PR people for the campaigns to get additional quotes. Like this: "It must be the silly season, because this is getting ridiculous," Clinton campaign spokesman Phil Singer said." I don't really know what that means, and it's interesting because the PR hacks can say pretty much whatever they want, and no one really holds them to it. And there's the story. In this case though, for all its length, I think the article says very little. It's mostly chatter. It does manage to give the candidate's individual stances on free-trade agreements in the last lines, in my opinion it would have been beneficial to the readers to know what the candidates really do rather than how their PR people do it.