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Relationships Between Commentators and Candidates Should be Disclosed, Prof. Bob Steele '69 Tells AP

December 7, 2011

5749December 7, 2011, Greencastle, Ind. — "Political consultant Dick Morris recently disclosed on Fox News Channel that some of the Republican presidential candidates that he talks about on the air have paid for advertisements in a newsletter he sends out to subscribers," begins an Associated Press story being distributed nationally today. "Columnist and ABC commentator George Will's wife works for Rick Perry. Fox host Greta Van Susteren's husband advised Herman Cain. NPR's Michele Norris left as host of All Things Considered in October because her husband began working for President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign." It adds that "advocates for ethics in journalism tend to lean toward full disclosure of conflicts caused by relationships between politicians and on-air reporters or commentators."

Bob Steele, Distinguished Professor of Journalism Ethics at DePauw University and Phyllis W. 2827Nicholas Director of DePauw's Janet Prindle Institute for Ethics, tells AP, "They may have an opinion, but they should still, I believe, have accuracy and fairness as their guidepost in the same way as other reporters."

You can access the complete report at the website of the Washington Post.

A 1969 graduate of DePauw, Robert M. Steele is one of America's leading experts on media ethics and is regularly quoted in news stories, including a USA Today story last week.

Source: Associated Press