Oops, I made a mistake in asserting the AP doesn't have a policy prohibiting its reporters from donating to candidates and PAC.
The wire service does bar such contributions, and in the interests of fairness, I am posting this note from the AP's managing editor on my blog.
Subj: ap reporters making political contributions
Date: 7/26/2004 2:42:47 PM Central Daylight Time
CC: SJohnson@ap.org, DCassata@ap.org, NPickler@ap.org, SSonner@ap.org, MASmith@ap.org, CHaswell@ap.org, KRobinson@ap.org, MHumbert@ap.org, firstname.lastname@example.org
Sent from the Internet (Details)
Dear M Petrelis:
I am writing in response to an e-mail and blog posting in which you
assert that two current AP political reporters have made contributions
to political parties. Please allow me to correct your misapprehension.
Both Scott Sonner of Reno and Mike Smith of Indianapolis traveled to
Republican National Conventions (in 2000 and 1996 respectively) along
with their delegations, which they were assigned to cover. Their hotel
charges in the host cities were initially charged to the state GOPs, and
in both cases our reporters wrote checks to reimburse the parties.
Through faulty bookkeeping at the parties' end, these payments showed up
as contributions, and despite AP's attempts to correct the record,
apparently continue to be listed as such.
AP does, in fact, have a policy against our reporters contributing to or
working on behalf of political candidates, and we are very mindful of
the conflict of interest such activities would create.
I would greatly appreciate it if you would help set the record straight
by circulating this reply to everyone who received your initial e-mail
and also by posting it on your blog.
AP Managing Editor