The Chattanooga Pulse elevated a few heart rates this week (if mostly among journalists) with its less than conventional interview of congressional candidate Weston Wamp.
The URL that got passed around to bloggers and twitterers went straight to the article’s third page, which happened to comprise only “soft” questions for the candidate. Here’s what greeted those who followed the link:
Several females in our office think you’re, well, hot, and are inclined to vote for you based solely on your dimples and hard body. Do you have a serious girlfriend or are you playing the field?
The interviewer went on to interrogate the young Wamp about his views on style, Facebook, and the McDonald’s restaurant chain’s seasonal “McRib” sandwich.
Wamp is not the only “looker” in his immediate family, it would seem. His sister Coty, then nineteen, was included in The Hill’s annual “50 Most Beautiful People on Capitol Hill” list in 2008.
But does the very existence of such a published list (as well as the Politics1.com survey mentioned in a previous post) indicate a degree of interest among the public in the arguably superficial aspects of political life? Or is this a case of “the tail wagging the dog”?
Should journalists avoid the “fluff,” or should they seek to inform their consumers about a broad range of perspectives into the lives of public figures?