Republicans like to complain that the mainstream media is pro-Obama and anti-Romney, and a Politico analysis of recent coverage thinks they have a point. It notes, for example, that the New York Times ran a front-page story Sunday about Ann Romney's horse-riding, only days after burying a small item inside about a new book's revelations on President Obama's "prolific" pot-smoking habits in college. Says Haley Barbour, "The New York Times has given Obama the longest wet kiss in political history, and they have done him a favor again."
While Barbour is expected to say such things, "it’s certainly hard to argue that the Romneys’ horse-riding habits today are worse than the (David) Maraniss revelations, which have gotten little mainstream coverage," write Jim VendeHei and Mike Allen. Sure, the Obama news is from years ago, but contrast that with the heavy coverage of Romney's high school days that portrayed him as a bully, and possibly a homophobic one at that. That "5,500-word account was invested with far more significance than it merited, and is more voyeuristic than relevant to assessing Romney’s readiness for office," they write. Read the full piece here, which includes a response from the Times. Other journalists have begun pushing back against the Politico story, and the Huffington Post rounds up criticism here. (Read more media stories.)