Yet another update on the Argus’ big legislative story. More corrections, and still little insight.

I had originally noted under the last post on the topic that the Argus was still re-writing their mess of a legislative analysis, as per a notation of their correction under that story, they’re admitting that they had to go back in to fix it (after I pointed out how they had no idea of what they’re talking about):

Correction: An earlier version of this story overstated the number of incumbents running in competitive districts. Our updated analysis suggests eight, not six, races are likely to be competitive based on recent election history and the lack of incumbents.

and…

Screen Shot 2016-08-19 at 1.51.09 PM

Read the updated mess here.

In addition, I see that they have a standalone article/blogpost with additional information on the “oops,” in an article entitled “A clarification on our competitive races story

My spreadsheet, though, mislabeled a handful of legislators who are seeking another term but in a different chamber (House reps seeking a Senate seat for vice versa.) I went through the list this morning and removed the “incumbent” label from those candidates.

and…

My editor and I also cleaned up the spreadsheet to combine mutli-seat House races into a single row. We initially did our math based on “seats” rather than districts, which became confusing. It doesn’t change our conclusion, but hopefully the table is more clear now.

Read that here.

We initially did our math based on “seats” rather than districts, which became confusing.”  It’s bad enough the “political” reporter didn’t understand South Dakota’s long standing system of electing house seats, but the editor didn’t understand it either? Good Lord.

They might have gotten around to fixing more of their mistakes today, but even after fixing them, they leave the reader with no real insight or analysis, aside from “There are Republicans who live here” and “Democrats live in this district.”  Not to mention skipping over races that everyone else in the state views as competitive, most notably Langer V Barth.

Oh well. C’est la vie. It’s the Argus we’re talking about. No surprises here.

5 thoughts on “Yet another update on the Argus’ big legislative story. More corrections, and still little insight.

    1. Pat Powers Post author

      Note sure what “hate” you’re talking about.

      I recently did a story when they wrote an irresponsible story about the AG prosecuting crime, where they called him “jackboots,” which was beyond the pale in attacking him for doing his job.

      And in this instance, I’m pointing out their complete incompetence in writing about state politics, when they claim to be an authority. They couldn’t even bother to look up who was an incumbent, for gosh sakes.

      I’ve long written about South Dakota media as well as South Dakota politics, especially when they mess up this badly.

  1. Troy Jones

    After two corrections and being totally embarrassed, you’d think they’d at least come clean AND get it right the third time.

    “We initially did our math based on “seats” rather than districts, which became confusing. It doesn’t change our conclusion, but hopefully the table is more clear now.”

    1) It wasn’t math you did. But, even if it allegorically it was math, just like you didn’t get much credit for getting the math question right if you couldn’t show your work (no lucky guesses), spinning bottles around and occasionally getting a “right answer” doesn’t mean you did math.

    2) Being able to construct a table or a matrix isn’t math either. It is the transition from arithmetic to math covered about in the 6th grade. Math (analysis) is drawing conclusions from the information in the table and matrix. Still waiting for the 8th grade level analysis.