Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Thrown into the fire

Editors at the Daily Gazette must be counting the seconds before Kris Thompson leaves his job at the Capitol. And they must be casually hoping his next career that doesn’t involve spreading blatant misinformation about the state Senate Majority leader.

For the second time in as many months, the Gazette was again burned by Thompson, Sen. Bruno’s most recent incarnation of a press secretary, when he swore off highly publicized rumors that boss planned to call it quits before his term expires in January. News stories began circulating about Hollywood Joe’s impending departure from office, mere moments after he unveiled plans for a high-speed freight service in Mechanicville. The statement most agencies cited was an insinuation the senator made about his seat remaining open for a spell.

“There'll be a vacancy until Assemblyman Roy McDonald gets elected in this district,” he told a gaggle of reporters gathered at the event.

Though slightly vague, this statement clearly indicates Bruno’s intentions to wrap things up early. But while all of the other news agencies were content to take the senator’s word for it, the Daily Gazette went a step further and asked for Thompson to elaborate. Thompson naturally decided to flatly deny the story every other news agency was reporting. So while the rest of the world was wondering why Bruno was stepping down early, the Gazette posted a Web story proclaiming Bruno’s statements were misconstrued.

Of course, this wasn’t the first time Thompson threw the Gazette into the fire. In late May –less than four weeks before Bruno announced his retirement –Thompson spoke glowingly of Bruno’s decision to circulate re-election petitions in Saratoga and Rensselaer counties. His assurances came after Bruno made a quizzical statement to the paper, saying that “everything is timely in this business.”

Naturally, the re-election story is ancient history now. Fortunately for the Gazette, the story about Bruno serving out his term didn t seem to make it to print. And the web version posted Tuesday has now been killed, clearly in wake of the veritable frenzy of media sources reporting Bruno’s impending departure. But it doesn’t change the fact that the Gazette was the only paper disavowing media reports up until early Wednesday morning.

In later news reports, Thompson seemed to back down a bit from the hard line he initially took. Instead of Bruno serving out his term, he told reporters the senator had no time frame for his departure and snidely remarked that “at some point in time, Joe Bruno will no longer be a state senator.”

Even this seems to be stretching the truth, given Bruno’s widely circulated comments Tuesday. For instance, he told the Daily News he plans to leave within a matter of weeks; something that sounds definitively like a time line.

“I have to extricate myself, at least in my mind, in order to do that,” he said. “So I'm looking at the best time now and I can tell you, I'm hoping maybe as soon as the next couple of weeks.”

Perhaps some of the blame can be heaped on the Gazette for taking Thompson’s word for it, but not much. His job detail –at least on a “day-to-day” basis now –is to converse with Bruno and relay accurate information to the press. After all, he’s not the one who takes a circulation hit when the information he doles out is patently wrong.

6 Comments:

Blogger Big Dan said...

Can Joe just go? Please it is over get out, go home. First the fatass sits in a truck for his picture and now it is a trains engine. He'd probably drive that off the tracks like he did New York.

Has anyone read the small print on the contract concerning Bruno Stadium? I bet bet Jackass Joe has a deal to be buried in center field between a double header.

5:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hold Page One -- Bruno lies, via one of his many flacks.

Not the first time, but getting close to the last.

6:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

NYRA today announced:

The race track will now be named the Joseph Bruno Race Track at Saratoga.

8:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

NYRA ANNOUNCED TODAY THAT BRUNO AND HIS PARTNER IN CRIMES TOM MCTYGUE WILL NOT BE ALLOWED IN THE TRACK. THEY WENT ON TO SAY THAT WITH THEM IN THE TRACK WE WOULD HAVE MORE HORSE'S ASSES THAN HORSE'S. THIS WOULD RUIN ATTENDANCE!

2:19 PM  
Blogger Horatio Alger said...

Here we go...off to the races again...

10:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It boggles my mind that Kris Thompson got a job of such import. Did you read him when he was a reporter at The Record? He'll be working at Cumby's when Bruno retires.

1:28 PM  

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