No political reporting from The Union, just an ad to drum up political ad revenue

This weekend Sierra Foothills Report wrote three stories about the latest campaign finance reports for local elections, gleaned from reading the reports on the weekend. We shared them on Facebook, where they received dozens of “likes” and interesting, signed comments:

  1. “Tea party-influenced PAC gives $1,500 to campaign banning local outdoor marijuana grows” is here.

2. “Here comes Heidi! Duane’s crew better open wallets wider, finance reports show” is here.

3. “Dueling campaign signs in Nevada City” is here.

On Sunday night, YubaNet weighed in with a comprehensive version, “Campaign finance reports reveal connections in local politics.” It is here. YubaNet made many of the same observations, identifying contributions (cash or “in-kind”) to Measure W and candidate Duane Strawser from the “Americans for Good Government PAC.” It also noted the PAC “was formed in 2014, by members of the local Tea Party.”

But this morning’s issue of The Union has nothing about the campaign finance reports. Not a word. This election season the reports are online via “e-filings.” Why isn’t The Union informing its readers about the local contributions?

Instead, the newspaper published a self-serving ad on Page A7 seeking to boost political ad sales from a newspaper trade group (see below). It reads: “Elections are a local business. Newspapers are a local business. How can local candidates connect with their voters and contributors? By advertising in local newspapers, in print and online.”

How ironic is that? An ad to drum up political advertising without the political reporting. Meanwhile, “the internet is changing how we communicate” — on Facebook, online news services and

Author: jeffpelline

Jeff Pelline is a veteran editor and award-winning journalist - in print and online. He is publisher of Sierra FoodWineArt magazine and its website Jeff covered business and technology for The San Francisco Chronicle for years, was a founding editor and Editor of CNET News, and was Editor of The Union, a 145-year-old newspaper in Grass Valley. Jeff has a bachelor's degree from UC Berkeley and a master's from Northwestern University. His hobbies include sailing and trout fishing.

2 thoughts on “No political reporting from The Union, just an ad to drum up political ad revenue”

  1. YubaNet also noted: “The local Republican Central Committee received $1,875.00 from Jan. 1 through April 23, 2016, according to their Form 460. Among the donors to the committee were the Grass Valley Downtown Association with a $100 contribution on March 8th and former democrat turned Decline to State and current candidate Duane Strawser with a $150 contribution on April 18th.”

  2. I contacted the GVDA, which confirmed “The GVDA did not make any monetary donation to the Republican Central Committee.” The Republican Central Committee is going to submit a corrected campaign finance report.

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