Ben Hall Vs. the Houston Chronicle
Last Thursday, Julia Smekalina, Hall's press secretary, emailed Jeff Cohen, executive editor of opinions and editorials for the Chron, asking if they could open up the meeting to all media since they weren't going for the public thing. Again, Cohen seemed uninterested in this option as they continued to "discuss" it over email.
Smekalina and Jeff Cohen volleyed emails back and forth, each message more pointy until finally they got to the last of it:
Smekalina: In that case, would you allow the editorial meeting to be filmed by our campaign and distributed or made available online?
Hall's camp, decrying unfair treatment, a Chron bias toward Parker and with some kind of a focus on making the editorial board meeting public for "the people," then declined to attend the meeting. Or more specifically, according to the Chron, he backed out 15 minutes before the meeting was scheduled to take place.
Cohen issued a statement after the meeting, according to the Chron:
"Candidate Hall was invited to the Chronicle's editorial board to be considered for an endorsement alongside Mayor Parker. It's the same kind of invitation newspapers have extended for more than 100 years. After saying he would be there, Hall backed out at the last minute. We're disappointed that he didn't want to discuss important issues facing Houston but we do not customize each editorial meeting to fit the demands of a particular candidate."
Parker was formally endorsed for mayor by the Chron Sunday. Go figure.