First, a qualification – on the 1 to 10 outrage scale, this barely registers a \”1.\” But it is interesting, nonetheless.

Today on his radio show and on his blog, Charlie Sykes was critical of a pro-Mike Gableman for Supreme Court advertisement. (I happen to share his sentiment, incidentally.) In his words, he decided to \”throw a flag\” on his own team for the inappropriateness of the ad.

Miraculously, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, who it appears goes out of its way to deny Sykes\’ existence, thinks this is newsworthy. On their \”All Politics\” blog, a mention of Sykes\’ position warranted its own posting. Funny that every time Sykes makes an outstanding point criticizing a Democrat, it disappears into the ether.

Now, I understand that there\’s a certain \”man bites dog\” element to a right-wing radio talk show host being critical of his own preferred candidate. But it is ironic that Sykes suddenly becomes so newsworthy when he\’s critical of a Republican.

It\’s a long, time-tested rule that if you happened to be a Republican looking for the media to cover you, all you have to do is criticize other Republicans. This is largely how John McCain became the media darling he currently is. You don\’t have to look too hard to find stories about anti-Iraq war Republicans, yet trying to find news articles about pro-war Democrats is like finding Eliot Spitzer in a monastery. People under 30 years old in Wisconsin only know who Bill Kraus and Lee Sherman Dreyfus are because of their infinite press appearances as \”Republicans bashing Republicans.\”

Perhaps no dissent among Democrats exists on any issue. Maybe every single one thinks Louis Butler\’s equally baseless ads attacking Gableman are perfectly appropriate. But somehow, I\’m not sure we\’d be hearing as much from them if they did.

SIDE NOTE: The Journal Sentinel blog post was written by Stacy Forster, who is an outstanding reporter – and I am NOT alleging any kind of bias on her part. I just think it\’s interesting how this whole \”Republicans criticizing Republicans\” phenomenon fits into the larger picture.