Big News at the Boston Herald: Rand Paul Loves His Wife

The paper devoted tons of resources to a boring interview with the presidential candidate.

Associated Press

Photo via AP

The pressures of modern media have made it hard on local newspapers striving to cover everything. But these pressures are probably felt even more keenly at the Boston Herald when so many of the reportorial resources are already tied up covering the boring stuff politicians say on Boston Herald Radio.

Consider a particularly gratuitous case in this morning’s paper: Republican Senator and presidential candidate Rand Paul appeared on Boston Herald Radio Thursday where he took the controversial stance that anyone who attacked his wife during the campaign would “have to answer to me.” He continued, “They better not is all I can say. So far I don’t think I’ve seen anybody being too mean.”

Reacting to this bombshell, the newspaper published a story authored by three reporters. They asked political pollsters and experts what Paul’s position meant for his campaign. The consensus? It was good.

“This makes him appear robust — he may be weak on foreign policy, but he’s macho when it comes to his family,” said pollster John Zogby.

However, these three reporters didn’t really hit on every angle of the news that Rand Paul loves his wife, and so columnist Jaclyn Cashman, who conducted the interview with Paul, also penned a column in the paper to accompany the news coverage. Her take? Defending your wife from attacks that remain, at this point, mostly hypothetical, is a good and important thing to do because it makes lady voters feel a stirring in their loins:

Rand Paul has proven to be rough around the edges when it comes to his opponents in Washington, and this kind of chivalry could really soften his image and work wonders with female voters.

You might wonder whether the Boston Herald went a little big on its coverage of Rand’s comments. You wouldn’t be alone. There were, after all, plenty of things that happened in the city of Boston that didn’t get coverage, certainly not from any of the four staffers assigned to the Chivalry beat, as David Bernstein pointed out:

But it’s no real surprise. The paper has never been shy about using its pages on glorified house ads. And it comes as part of the Herald’s strategy to relentlessly promote anything that happens on its newish radio station as can’t-miss national news.

And hey, to be fair, Paul’s interview did nab a few headlines on national websites. Buzzfeed, though, focused less on Paul’s defense of his wife against unknown attackers and more on his advice that it’s “best not to read” online bullying. Buzzfeed’s headline? “Rand Paul: Don’t Read The Comments.” Now there’s advice the Boston Herald’s audience in particular could use.