Trying Too Hard: HuffPost misses the mark with attempt at Cameron scandal

In the high-stakes world of political journalism, the allure of the ‘gotcha’ story is often irresistible. However, these stories should be backed by substantial investigative research, credible sources, and above all, an understanding of the political ecosystem being covered. A recent article by the Huffington Post titled ‘Does The Kentucky Attorney General Go To Work? An Investigation.’ on Daniel Cameron, a candidate in the 2023 Kentucky governor’s election, regrettably fell short on all these counts.

The article attempts to investigate why there’s no record of Cameron using his key fob to enter the Kentucky state Capitol building over the last three years, even though his office is located inside. The premise appears to be intriguing: a potential gubernatorial candidate seemingly avoiding his office at the Capitol for years on end.

However, instead of digging deeper, the article seems to have stopped at the surface level. Yes, it does mention a series of open records requests that were returned blank. Yes, it quotes the Kentucky state office’s affirmation that nothing has been redacted or withheld. But what it misses is an explanation beyond the key fob logs. As Courier-Journal politics reporter Olivia Krauth pointed out on Twitter, there is a possibility that Cameron enters the Capitol via the annex tunnel system, which wouldn’t necessitate a key fob swipe.

@oliviakrauth provides a possible explanation on twitter.

Moreover, the Huffington Post makes a significant leap in its logic by insinuating that because there are no records of Cameron swiping in, he must not be attending work. This is quite a simplistic view to take, especially when the piece itself includes photographic evidence of Cameron in the Capitol, which contradicts its own insinuation. The article even provides possible explanations for the lack of records, such as the possibility of Cameron being swiped in by staff members, but then quickly brushes these off to retain its original narrative.

The article does its readers a disservice by only scratching the surface and assuming its readers will take the presented ‘facts’ at face value. A deeper investigation would have probed why there might be no records of Cameron’s key fob use and confirmed whether or not these reasons were legitimate.

If you have photographic evidence of Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron using a fob key or any other kind of security card to get into the state Capitol, please contact the local authorities us. Anonymity guaranteed.

Final line of ‘Does The Kentucky Attorney General Go To Work? An Investigation.’ by Jennifer Bendery of the Huffington Post

Finally, the quip at the end of the article is childish at best. The audacious invitation for readers to send in photographic evidence of Cameron using a fob key comes across as a desperate attempt to stir up a scandal where there may be none. It takes away from the gravity of the journalistic endeavor and leaves the reader questioning the motives behind the piece.

In the end, the article comes off as a missed opportunity. If the Huffington Post truly wanted to delve into potential issues with Cameron’s work ethic or commitment to his current role, they needed to go beyond key fob records. This requires comprehensive investigative journalism, not just provocative claims based on superficial evidence. Otherwise, the narrative may be dismissed as just another outlet trying too hard to create a scandal.

Top graphic: Screenshot of ‘Does The Kentucky Attorney General Go To Work? An Investigation.‘ by Jennifer Bendery of the Huffington Post