According to the interviews (including those of McInnis) there are one of two things that happened...
- McInnis committed outright plagiarism
- McInnis put his name on a researcher's plagiarism without crediting the researcher
We do not tolerate these kinds of character flaws on the right. Not to say we have any immunity, but unlike the left, we do not pretend that it didn't happen in hopes of progressing an ideology. I've seen the interviews, and the story doesn't pass the sniff test.
Now for the interesting part...
The local media is obsessed with this story. Even sending e-mail alerts and keeping the story on the front page when small details are known, like the resignation of three campaign staffers. Take note: If you have (R) after your name, you will be scrutinized for everything and anything in the media.
We didn't see this kind of coverage when Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper admitted his corporation hired the illegal immigrant that shot and killed Denver Police Detective Donnie Young. This is a crime. Hickenlooper, a Democrat, is Mayor to this day and is projected to be the Dem candidate for Governor.
We didn't see this kind of coverage when Democrat Governor Bill Ritter's campaign attorney Stephanie Villafuerte used Denver DA resources to out a whistle blower on Ritter's catch and release policy. This is a crime. Ritter has decided not to seek reelection after speculation that he lied to Federal investigators about his role. If this is true, Ritter committed a crime.
We did see this kind of coverage when Douglas Bruce, a strong advocate of taxpayer rights and author of TABOR (this is worthy of it's own post), allegedly kicked a reporter in the knee for being disrespectful during a moment of prayer at the Capitol. Bruce was nearly run out of town--any guesses as to his party affiliation or ideology?
What Scott McInnis did was wrong, but it was not a crime. It is a matter that could be resolved in the civil courts and, from recent reporting, McInnis is giving back the $300,000 he was paid for the article in question. What these front running Colorado Democrats have done is a crime and the coverage was limited to a blurb then stricken from the front page.
One could speculate that the higher standard on the right for personal conduct makes this a bigger story--McInnis was held to a higher standard and is somewhat of an ideological hypocrite. Of course, this would mean Democrats are held to a lower standard and their hypocrisy is readily accepted by the press.
The better explanation is, once again, media that has selected it's winner and crafted a reality to create that outcome. This is tragic given that we can't afford anymore "selected" leadership. The state has gone from budget surpluses and tax rebates to shortfalls, debt, and higher regulatory costs that are hurting Coloradans.
I'm not saying McInnis should be afforded a pass. I just wish the same scrutiny applied to Republicans was also applied to Democrats. We would end up with much better candidates.