This is amusing for it’s total ridiculousness. In the AP story about upcoming Senate campaign of Al Franken, the soon to be ex-Air America ranter and supposed comedian, AP seems to have forgotten to mention he is a liberal.

The short AP blurb doesn’t mention it at all: Short AP Version.

And the long piece gives no hint of Franken’s leanings until the last line of the report: Long AP Version.

And even the long piece does not state Franken’s leftist positioning as a fact, but couches it as the claim of a political science professor. And they don’t even introduce the label until the very last paragraph of a ten paragraph story.

Franken faces major challenges, said Larry Jacobs, a political science professor at the University of Minnesota. Besides needing to establish himself as a serious candidate, Franken has staked out left-wing policies that make it questionable whether he can win independent voters, Jacobs said.

Here is how the piece starts (in the short version)

WASHINGTON (AP) – Comedian Al Franken has decided to run for the U.S. Senate in Minnesota in 2008, challenging incumbent Republican Norm Coleman, a senior Democratic Party official said Wednesday.

No mention of Franken’s leftist proclivities there.

Now let’s contrast that with how the AP worded the first segments of several of their stories on Republicans who have recently announced they are running for office. (Bold emphasis mine)

Mike Huckabee Announcement

(First section) WASHINGTON — Conservative Republican Mike Huckabee, seeking to repeat the success of another former governor from Hope, Ark., said Sunday he is taking the first step in what he acknowledged is an underdog bid for the White House in 2008.

Duncan Hunter Announcement

(Fourth section) The 14-term conservative from California, who has made no secret of his White House aspirations, set up a presidential exploratory committee earlier this month.

Brownback Announcement

(First section)TOPEKA, Kan. — Kansas Sen. Sam Brownback figures he has an edge with Republican voters that other presidential rivals don’t – unquestioned conservative credentials.

About campaign of Sam Brownback and Duncan Hunter

(First section) WASHINGTON — Two of the Republicans’ most conservative presidential hopefuls promised anti-abortion activists on Monday that if elected, they would work to overturn the Supreme Court decision legalizing the procedure.

Lots of mentions of “conservative” leanings in their reports of Republican announcements for candidacy. So, why not mention Franken’s leftism especially since it isn’t just an incidental fact with Franken himself saying he is loudly and proudly a leftist?

Yet, AP won’t even accede to the candidate’s own self-labeled positioning.

Why can’t the AP force themselves to identify liberal candidates as such?

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