The New York Times did not properly cover a congressional vote in favor of Israel, reporting only on a UNSC vote that condemned the Jewish state. 

By: Ira Stoll/ the Algemeiner

For the New York Times coverage of Jews and Jewish issues, it’s two steps forward, one step back.

The executive editor of the New York Times, Dean Baquet, said in a recent interview that New York Times readers have “far more power” to influence the decisions of Times editors than they ever have had before. “Readers pay our bills more than they ever have. We have to listen to them,” Mr. Baquet said.

Yet there’s at least one area in which the Times is still in need of improvement, and that is in its coverage of Israel. The US House of Representatives voted on January 5 to approve a resolution objecting to UN Security Council Resolution 2334 as “biased against Israel” and calling for it to be repealed or fundamentally altered.

The approval came on a 342-80 vote that included majorities of both Republicans and Democrats.

The Times didn’t even assign a staffer to report that news. Nor, at least as far as I can tell, was the news published in the print newspaper. The Times instead handled it only on its website, relying on a couple of Associated Press dispatches .

Contrast that to the second-coming-type coverage — top-of-the-front page headlines, long editorials, multiple ecstatic op-ed pieces, wave upon wave of staff-written news articles — that accompanied the UN Security Council vote. When Israel is condemned, the Times is all over the story. Yet when the condemnation of Israel is itself condemned by a wide bipartisan majority in Congress, the editors don’t consider it news “fit to print.”

Here’s hoping that when it comes to their failure to cover the Congressional vote in response to the UN resolution, the Times editors attempt a make-up call like in previous cases where they have improved their coverage of Jewish issues.

It’ll be a fine test of Mr. Baquet’s promise to listen to the paper’s readers.

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