Letter to the editor

Phillips’ cover story ‘puff piece’


As a long-time reader of City Pulse, I’ve always considered Kyle Melinn as someone who enjoys being cantankerous but is essentially harmless. However, his centerfold puff piece on Dean Phillips (Jan. 10), coming on the heels of his misguided one-sided attack on Michigan’s extremely successful redistricting reform, has forced me to conclude that he in in fact intends to sabotage the Democratic Party. Melinn’s glowing portrayal of Phillips repeats the same platitudes being used by Republicans to attack Biden (inflation, the southern border) without any context of how Biden has brought the inflation rate down considerably, while posting absolute record job growth and record-high stock markets, nor any mention of how it is Republicans that are deliberately blocking any increased funding for southern border protection in order to keep the issue alive.  (If Melinn had wanted to make this article more balanced and less of a puff piece, he could simply have followed his re-statement of Phillips’ arguments about “many Americans are struggling” with something like: “Of course, Biden supporters will counter with facts about Biden’s record job creation and reduction in unemployment rates”.”) How ironically revealing that the article features Gene McCarthy’s 1968 run against Lyndon Johnson, since that effort gave us Richard Nixon, something that Melinn somehow fails to mention in the article. Now that I see the big “front page” coverage and huge two-page centerfold treatment of this Phillips campaign promotional material, I have to question the motivation of City Pulse management and ownership. The 2024 election is as serious as a heart attack. We cannot afford to play around with a McCarthy-type political game this year.

I can appreciate the notion of having an article about a potentially newsworthy subject, such as Dean Phillips’ unusual run for the nomination. However, I found the article to be unabashedly favorable to Phillips, and neglecting what is actually likely the most “important” aspect of his run (since he has absolutely no chance of winning), which is the very real risk that efforts like his and/or the various third-party efforts will perhaps inadvertently (or deliberately in the case of some billionaire-funded third-party discussions) lead to a Trump victory. I would think that noting and discussing that aspect would be an important part of covering the “Dean Phillips story.”

Martin Kushler


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