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No more news profiles on Beto O'Rourke being 'cool,' please

Washington Examiner logo Washington Examiner 10/11/2018 Eddie Scarry
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Editor’s note: The opinions in this article are the author’s, as published by our content partner, and do not necessarily represent the views of MSN or Microsoft.

It would be useful if every news profile on Beto O’Rourke came with a warning that you'll need to shower after reading. It’s impossible to get through one without feeling gross. 

It’s somewhat interesting that a Democratic U.S. Senate candidate is campaigning within a narrow margin behind the ever-awkward GOP Sen. Ted Cruz in Texas, where a Democrat hasn’t won statewide office since 1994.

But shouldn’t there be a cap on the number of times people need to be reminded that he’s “cool”? Or that he apparently looks like a Kennedy?

The Washington Post’s Dana Milbank gushed in a column Monday over Democratic voters’ “Betomania” and compared O’Rourke’s campaign with great originality to Robert Kennedy.

Milbank also tickled himself describing O’Rourke’s “cool factor,” because he once played in a rock band and knows how to skateboard. (Reminder: O’Rourke is a candidate for Senate and not, as Milbank apparently hopes, a Ninja Turtle.)

A New York Times story on Wednesday really dug into the meat of O’Rourke’s campaign, noting that “in an interview last week, Mr. O’Rourke said that he wants everyone to find a home in his campaign, regardless of political party, and that he is listening to conservatives.”

The Times unfortunately found no space to describe anything about O’Rourke’s policy positions, which includes single-payer healthcare, other than a bit about “family planning clinics,” which is code for O'Rourke being pro-abortion.

The Washington Post can hardly contain itself.

“Is he a rock star trying to make a record or a regular guy just trying to do the right thing?” asked Washington Post writer Ben Terris in a Sep. 4 profile on O’Rourke. “The trick, of course, is that he has to try to be both.”

In yet another profile on Aug. 31, Post reporter Jenna Johnson beat it into everyone's heads how sensitive O’Rourke is.

“At a time when politics has become increasingly nasty and divisive — when President Trump has been blamed for ended friendships and a deterioration of civility — O’Rourke has laid down a potent counterargument: compassion. O’Rourke, 45, says he’s intent on running a positive campaign, one focused not on Trump or the famously acerbic Cruz but on soothing hot anger with a promise of something different.”

I feel better already.

And in February 2017 — that’s how far back this obsession goes — the Post described O’Rourke as looking “more like a Kennedy than the Kennedys do.”

To be sure, it’s not just the Post. Vanity Fair in May 2017 introduced “The Kennedyesque Democrat Trying to Beat Ted Cruz.”

The Texas Senate race might be a close one. Hey, any guesses on who reporters want to win?

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