June 8, 2007

Today's Front Pages Analysis

Immigration and heiress heat up headlines

As an immigration bill faltered, the space shuttle poised for liftoff and Tony Soprano prepared to bid adieu, newspaper editors appeared grateful today that they will always have Paris.

The petite heiress’ early release from jail for driving on a suspended license was front-page news across the nation and the world:

  • • In Melbourne, Australia, The Age put Paris Hilton above the fold.
  • • Closer to home, California’s OC Post led with “Home-grown controversy; Paris Hilton is out of jail after 3 days, but, wait, an L.A. judge may send her back.”
  • • On the East Coast, the New York Post fumed “Blonde justice: Fury as Paris gets out of jail.”

The setback for immigration reform was played straight in the Miami Herald, as “Immigration bill on life support.” The Washington Times offered a look-forward analysis, “Kennedy alliance costly to GOP senators.” And The Christian Science Monitor said “Immigration divides GOP.”

In the Southeast, dry weather was a front-page focus. Florida’s Charlotte Herald-Tribune offered a photo of parched land with the headline, “Redefining dry.” The Dothan (Ala.) Eagle is also “Battling drought.” But in Iowa, The Gazette noted that a moist spring would bring hordes of mosquitoes: “This forecast bites.”

A positive side to nature news: The Northwest Florida Daily News reported that scientists aren’t giving up on the ivory-billed woodpecker, once believed to be extinct. A jazzy graphic set off a cheerful headline: “There’s hope for the ol’ bird.”

In health news, a study on vitamin D’s benefits in reducing cancer risk made headlines in Hackensack, N.J.,where The Record also offered a sidebar on how to get enough D in your diet. A surgical setback for a set of conjoined twins was explained in a graphic treatment in The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer.

Finally, a letter unearthed from Abraham Lincoln to the Union general after Gettysburg piqued editors’ interest. In Bend, Ore., The Bulletin reported, “1863 letter reveals an optimistic Lincoln.”

Patty Rhule is a project editor at the Newseum.

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