The relationship between journalists and political campaigns is a symbiotic one. The two sides perform necessary actions for each other to be successful. The press serves a the people's connection to a campaign, collecting information and serving as a watchdog over the actions of the operation. The campaign, for its part, provides the press with news.

The press's role as the "fourth estate" of government is always important. During a campaign the people rely on journalists to keep the candidates ans their campaign's honest and report on what is said by a candidate and where a campaign's money is coming from, although this important function rarely makes front page news.

Perhaps the most important function of the press during a campaign is the vetting of candidates. Vetting is essentially the evaluation of a candidate's abilities and ethics through inquiry into their personal lives and professional records. Many candidates have risen and fallen with their ability to handle this process. Just this past winter former GOP hopeful Herman Cain was destroyed by reports of his extramarital affairs and his inability to answer a simple question on a prominent current event. 
However, vetting has often failed in the past. Particularly in the debates, journalists have not held candidates as close to the fire as some would like, often tossing irrelevant softball questions into the debate. If candidates are not held on trial in a public forum than the people are not properly being served by journalists.

It is vital that journalists maintain this duty so that it is always the best candidates being elected to office.
 





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