On Gwen Graham announcement, who scooped whom?
Marc Caputo (L), William Hatfield.

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Despite Congresswoman Gwen Graham‘s email telling supporters she wanted them to “hear it first” of her possible bid for governor, two other media outlets broke the news before she did.

The admittedly inside-the-Tallahassee-bubble question is, who got the scoop: POLITICO Florida or the Tallahassee Democrat, Graham’s hometown newspaper?

For the record, Graham’s own email announcing her consideration of a run was received at 7:08 a.m.

But POLITICO Florida’s Marc Caputo had it in his Thursday morning Playbook email, crowing he had it first. FloridaPolitics.com received that email at 7:01 a.m.

Caputo’s separate post on the Graham news is timestamped 5:37 a.m.

“Remember you read the above story on POLITICO Florida, and not in other major Florida pubs first,” he wrote in Playbook.

“This way, as with other POLITICO scoops the past week (Trump’s campaign manager falsely dissing the RPOF chair, a prosecutor not charging him for battery in a separate incident), you can smile when other outlets try to fob off the news as if they broke it.”

Not so fast, said Tallahassee Democrat executive editor William Hatfield.

The newspaper’s website posted a story early Thursday headlined “Gwen Graham announces possible run for governor.”

In a Facebook post, Hatfield wrote, “This scoop went live on tdo.com at 5 a.m.”

“… Haven’t yet met Rep. Graham but have always heard that she is a hugger,” Hatfield added. “I reckon a lot of us will find that out in the next couple years!”

The story, written by Democrat veteran Jeff Burlew, was last timestamped at 8:10 a.m., although the stamp resets every time the story is updated.

A recent court-ordered redistricting of the state’s congressional seats turned Graham’s 2nd District into a Republican-leaning one that the Democratic first-termer likely would not retake.

The district’s new boundaries also divide her home county of Leon in two.

2 p.m. update: For what it’s worth, the National Journal “Hotline‘s Wake-Up Call!” gives first credit on the story to the Democrat.

Jim Rosica ([email protected]) covers the Florida Legislature, state agencies and courts from Tallahassee. 

Jim Rosica

Jim Rosica is the Tallahassee-based Senior Editor for Florida Politics. He previously was the Tampa Tribune’s statehouse reporter. Before that, he covered three legislative sessions in Florida for The Associated Press. Jim graduated from law school in 2009 after spending nearly a decade covering courts for the Tallahassee Democrat, including reporting on the 2000 presidential recount. He can be reached at [email protected].


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