Here's a paragraph from the Republic's latest Gabby Giffords update. Can you find the obvious error?
She was elected to the state House in 2000 and ran for the state Senate in 2002 after the death of Tucson Sen. Andy Nichols, becoming at 32 the youngest state senator in Arizona history. She resigned from that position in December 2005 to run for the congressional seat being vacated by retiring Rep. Jim Kolbe, a Republican.
Youngest in history? Give me a break. Anyone who has any experience with history knows that there have been plenty of young people in both the House and Senate. When I served in the House, we had an "under 30 caucus". Keith Bee was a member of that caucus and was was elected to the House at 24 and then elected to the Senate at 26. That's just one obvious example of a Senator who was younger than Gabby.
Does is matter? Yes. The Republic has been running a series called "Arizona Fact Check" in which the goal is to "Keep Arizona Honest." There's only two problems with this approach...politicians are more accurate than journalists, and the Republic uses these "fact checks" to ding people the reporters don't like.
For example, check out how many twists and turns reporters Stephanie Russo and Alia Beard Rau had to go through in order to declare Senator Al Melvin's statement about the Republican Caucus "false."
Or how about this labryinth that Dennis Wagner has to create in order to claim that David Schweikert's assertion that stimulus money was used to fund Fast and Furious is somehow false.
This from the same crew that never bothered to cover Fast and Furious when it was unfolding and who often botch even the most basic facts.