United States Project

In the weeks before the Republican Party disassembled over the American Health Care Act, editorial boards across the country published a slew of critical takes on the proposed Obamacare replacement. As editorial boards delivered blunt critiques, so did many newsrooms deliver sharp stories that brought the impact of the Republican health proposal home for their readers.
“The GOP’s decision to pull the American Health Care Act reflects in no small measure the groundswell of opposition from local news outlets,” writes Trudy Lieberman for CJR. To which The Washington Post’s media columnist, Margaret Sullivan, replied, “Yep.
Just one month ago, Lieberman published an overview of the health care journalism landscapesome peaks, but mostly valleys, as one source described it. At just the moment that the electorate needs reporters to illuminate changes to the Affordable Care Act, Lieberman cautioned at the time, newsrooms may be poorly poised to provide that help.

But coverage of the AHCA and its subsequent withdrawal suggest that plenty of local newsrooms brought all available resources to bear on the issue. Read Lieberman’s full coverage here.
Be sure to read these new stories from CJR and correspondents to the United States Project:

  • “Looking back, we missed it.” So says Chris Quinn, the editor of Advance Ohio, which publishes In January, the Ohio news site announced plans to overhaul its politics coverage in the wake of the election, and dedicated reporters to a demographically diverse group of counties. Jackie Spinner reports on the new effort, “Ohio Matters,” which recently lost one staff member to BuzzFeed but carries on its work throughout the state.
  • “It was a real partnership.” Earlier this month, a Marshall Project collaboration with The Washington Post prompted swift changes in Philadelphia, where the city ended its practice of billing the families of juvenile offenders for their incarceration. One week later, another Marshall Project collaboration—this time with the LA Times—exposed a “two-tiered system” in California, in which prisoners might buy access “safer and more comfortable jail stays.” Jeremy Borden provides a deep look at the two collaborative efforts and their impact.
  • “I’ve never seen anybody genuflecting as often in the middle of the day as he seems to.” Feeding the animals with Joseph Albright, 88, whose five decades of work for the Jersey Journal may make him the longest-serving statehouse reporter in American history.
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