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Monday, February 22, 2010

Despite Editorial Hypocrisy, Newspaper Still Seeking A Payday

Saturday's Janesville Gazette editorial ironically titled, "Payday Loan Bill Should Have Included Rate Cap" was yet another shameful attempt by the newspaper to isolate Speaker Mike Sheridan.
JG Editorial Excerpt:
Speaker Mike Sheridan of Janesville says a bill that the Assembly passed Tuesday is tough on payday lenders. He says he has stopped seeing Shanna Wycoff, a lobbyist for the industry, and he apologized for being evasive about their relationship. He claims dating her did not influence his stance on legislation. Of course he would say these things. Sheridan wants to put this episode behind him. It’s not that simple, however.
It sure isn't that simple. Not when you're trying to keep a smear campaign alive.

Not surprisingly, the newspaper completely ignores the facts and the math on the payday interest cap amendment and the rollcall votes that eventually led to the cap's demise, and instead continues to blame Sheridan for Republican's obstruction and failure. The paper rambled on...
JG Editorial Excerpt:
Last September, Rep. Gordon Hintz, D-Oshkosh, introduced a bill to cap interest on payday loans at 36 percent. Sheridan supported that but later—was it before or after he started dating Wycoff?—backed off.
That no longer matters because regardless of which way Sheridan voted, two overwhelming truths remain after the fact. One; it would have failed anyways because assembly republicans negative vote overwhelmed the Democrats pro-cap vote and two; why should the newspaper criticize Sheridan for voting against the cap when the deceitful newspaper, despite the title to their editorial - IS ALSO AGAINST THE CAP!
JG Editorial Excerpt:
We believed a 36 percent cap was extreme and would create unintended consequences. At that rate, lenders wouldn’t rake in enough on a two-week, $100 loan to pay for the paperwork. Most would shut their doors.
But it's not just the 36% number they were against because...
JG Editorial Excerpt:
Even Sheridan’s neighboring Democrat, Rep. Kim Hixson of Whitewater, supports a rate cap. Hixson issued a news release saying he voted for AB 447 because it’s a step in the right direction.
Unlike local Republicans, Sheridan like Hixson, also voted for AB447, the Responsible Lenders Act. So what is the Gazette referring to here? Why it must be Hixson's position on the interest cap amendment to AB447. The newspaper offers a supporting hand for Hixson's position on an amendment they just finished saying is too extreme and a bearer of unfortunate consequences.

Make no mistake, the predatory publishers at the Janesville Gazette can't keep their own partisan posture straight. They are against Sheridan because he voted against the cap, but they are against the cap too. But wait, no, they're for the cap because Sheridan's position against the cap runs counter to another local Democrat's position on the cap, and they could use that as political foil - see, Sheridan stands against his own democratic colleagues.

And what about Republicans and the lobbyist industry who were solely responsible for crushing the cap amendment? Why they don't even get an honorable mention in this editorial.

The bottom line here is the newspaper that blasts Sheridan over changing his position in a matter of a few months on the rate cap can't even keep their own position straight in a matter of a few paragraphs. If the newspaper was the honest Joe they claim to be against a strong 36% rate cap, they should be commending Sheridan for changing his vote. Not tearing into him because they agree.

I couldn't even begin to make stuff up better than this. Click Cartoon For Lobbyist Story Click cartoon for Lobbyist Story at Racine Post


Anonymous said...

From todays paper, "Sheridan didn't address his personal relationship with a lobbyist for the industry, and Rotarians didn't ask about it in a brief question and answer session." Two reasons for that, 1) They don't care, 2) They have more class, unlike our local media who feels the need to mention it even though no one else did.

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