The first time Jay Inslee's gubernatorial campaign used our March 5 headline "McKenna Praises GOP Budget Despite Lack of Ed Funding," we felt compelled to write a clarification because we thought the ad lacked the full context of our reporting. (It's  certainly the campaign's right to use our headline, but it doesn't tell the whole story.)

As the conservative news site the NW Daily Marker reported on Saturday, despite our clarification, the Inslee camp is using the headline again. Oy.



Here's the deal: We contacted McKenna back in early March after Republicans and two dissident Democrats commandeered the senate floor and passed Republican budget chief Sen. Joe Zarelli's budget—which cut education by $73 million. McKenna had been running on a platform to increase education funding, and we wanted to see what the Republican gubernatorial candidate thought about his compatriots' proposal. Asked about the cuts, a McKenna spokesman praised the legislators for finding a bipartisan compromise, crediting their politics, but not specifically the substance of the budget.

Our headline should have said "budget deal," not "budget." (It was also a McKenna spokesman, Dan Sytman, not McKenna himself, who gave the legislators credit for striking the compromise that first passed the senate. So, we should have said "McKenna's office.")

The McKenna campaign came out the very next day with a statement, which we published, that identified the deal as a starting point and specifically called for education funding to be the top priority moving forward.

So, thanks to the magic of the Internet, and our annoyance with the Inslee camp, we're going to go back and change the headline to "McKenna Spokesman Credits Legislators for Passing Bipartisan Budget Proposal Despite Ed Funding Cuts."

Certainly not as sexy as our first headline, but a clearer one that the Inslee camp will have a harder time throwing around.
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