Reporting on Allard attending Visa-sponsored event, Tribune failed to disclose company's contribution to his last campaign

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The Greeley Tribune reported on October 9 that Colorado Republican U.S. Sen. Wayne Allard would attend an event at Fort Collins High School with representatives from Visa Inc. to launch a video game "aimed at helping kids balance their checkbooks." But in asking rhetorically, "So why will Allard be there?" the Tribune failed to report that Visa contributed $1,000 to Allard's 2002 re-election campaign.

On October 9, the Greeley Tribune reported that U.S. Sen. Wayne Allard (R-CO) would appear that day at Fort Collins High School with "representatives of Visa Inc." for the launch of "a new video game ... aimed at helping kids balance their checkbooks." The article, by reporter Greg Campbell, asked, "So why will Allard be there?" before quoting an Allard press release that "state[d] he will speak about 'the importance of financial literacy for teenagers in Colorado.' " The Tribune, however, omitted that, according to Federal Election Commission (FEC) filings, Visa Inc.'s political action committee contributed money to Allard's last senatorial campaign in 2002.

As the Tribune reported, "At first blush, it might sound like Sen. Wayne Allard's aides have been having too much fun writing mock press releases again: a recent dispatch from Washington, D.C., says that the senator, a former Denver Broncos linebacker and representatives of Visa Inc. will be launching a new video game at Fort Collins High School -- aimed at helping kids balance their checkbooks." The article further reported:

The video game is called "Financial Football," which explains the presence of former All-Pro linebacker Karl Mecklenburg and the Visa people. The game -- which incorporates lessons taught through "Practical Money Skills for Life," a money management program -- is part of a joint NFL/Visa educational initiative that also includes classroom curriculum and cell-phone downloads.

The event is at 1:15 p.m. today at Fort Collins High School, 3400 Lambkin Way.

So why will Allard be there? The release states he will speak about "the importance of financial literacy for teenagers in Colorado." And what better way to achieve that, after all, than with a money management video game that promises to help students "tackle" their financial futures in a "fun and engaging manner."

But in asking rhetorically why Allard would be at the Visa-sponsored event, the Tribune failed to report that in 2002, Visa U.S.A. Inc. Political Action Committee contributed $1,000 to Allard's campaign.

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