My new CJR column examines how the media often confuses centrism with objectivity in its coverage of budget politics, which frequently suggests that deficit reduction is a value-neutral priority that should take precedence over other possible objectives:
How should the United States choose among the difficult tradeoffs it faces in setting the federal budget? There’s no one correct answer, but you wouldn’t know it from coverage of the budget deal between Senator Patty Murray and Rep. Paul Ryan, which passed the Senate last night and will soon be signed into law.
Under the norm of objectivity that dominates mainstream political journalism in the United States, reporters are supposed to avoid endorsing competing political viewpoints or proposals. In practice, however, journalists often treat centrist policy priorities—especially on fiscal policy—as value-neutral.
Read the whole thing for more.