Newspapers failed to report withdrawal of Allard's ID-theft amendment, which they covered instead of his proposal to abolish federal minimum wage

››› ››› MEDIA MATTERS STAFF

Colorado newspapers that provided coverage of U.S. Sen. Wayne Allard's (R-CO) effort to curb identity theft with an amendment to a minimum wage measure have failed to report that his proposal was withdrawn.

Colorado newspapers, which largely ignored U.S. Sen. Wayne Allard's (R-CO) attempt to abolish the federal minimum wage but reported on his concurrently introduced proposal to curb identity theft, have failed to report that Allard later withdrew the ID-theft amendment from consideration.

As Colorado Media Matters noted on January 26, a number of newspapers -- including The Denver Post, the Rocky Mountain News online (in an Associated Press article), and the Denver Business Journal (online) -- published articles about Allard's ID-theft amendment, which he had announced in a news release. The amendment to the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007 would have allowed the Social Security Administration and the Homeland Security Department to share information regarding Social Security numbers. However, the newspapers that reported on that amendment did not report on Allard's concurrent proposal to amend the Minimum Wage Act by essentially abolishing the federal standard and giving states sole discretion in setting their minimum wage. Allard's office did not issue a press release about that amendment.

Colorado Media Matters noted on January 30 that the Post and The Pueblo Chieftain did briefly report on Allard's effort to abolish the federal minimum wage, an amendment that failed by a 69-28 vote in the Senate. But the Post item merely mentioned how Allard and U.S. Sen. Ken Salazar (D-CO) voted on the measure, omitting the fact that Allard sponsored it and gave a floor speech supporting it.

As of February 5, none of the publications that originally reported on Allard's ID-theft amendment had reported that it was withdrawn from consideration on January 31. The full Senate voted 94-3 in favor of the Minimum Wage Act on February 1, without Allard's ID-theft proposal.

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