Obviously, voting is a bedrock duty for any citizen, but when neither candidate addresses the issues of policy and instead focuses on their opponent’s past sins, is it a mistake for newspapers to report their comments as news? In other words, does journalism have a duty to give minimal coverage to mudslinging, and to insist that candidates say something of substance if they are going to get coverage?

I don’t care if Obama once rode an elevator with a communist. I don’t expect that anyone as rich as Romney would pay his or her fair share of taxes. I can see the flaws both candidates bring to this election, what I would sorely like to know is where each of them intends to drive the bus.

What follows is a NY Times column commenting on this dilemma.