By ALEX FRUIN
Each time I return home during breaks from college, I find that I am disappointed in myself for not staying up to date on the politics of my hometown. Even those students who are from Florida may have trouble keeping up with the political goings-on of their particular district or local city government when they’re at school in Miami. With midterm elections in just a few weeks, it is especially important to know what’s going on politically not only back home, but also across the country. A resource I’ve found myself relying upon to solve this problem is Stateline, a news aggregate that brings together all of the important political news from each state onto one website that can be a very helpful resource for journalists of all mediums.
A dropdown list on the side of the website allows users to choose a state that features all of the biggest political stories from the day of that area. Each of these pages also has a statistics box that tells those users who are unfamiliar with the state government the basic facts, including the current governor, secretary of state and other necessary officials (i.e., Missouri’s state page). There are also useful links on each of these pages to help journalists more easily access the official state websites and the websites of individual state officials.
If a journalist is not searching for information from a particular state, but rather a political topic, Stateline’s homepage allows the searcher this option. The news aggregate collects stories on topics such as Economy & Business, Homeland Security, and Taxes & Budget. This feature of the website allows journalists who work on a national scale to collect stories from all over the country to aid in their preliminary research.
Since most national media outlets have been able to expand and provide news from all over the country in the last few years with the technological advancements of the internet, others may not rely as frequently on third-party sources like Stateline as often as they would have in previous years. Yet, this can definitely be a valued resource for political journalists nationwide since it brings together stories from all different backgrounds and biases.