Mitt Romney Issues “Dark” Warning About Democracy

( )- Senator Mitt Romney, R-Utah, expressed disappointment at the decline of public confidence in the media and the proliferation of “news deserts” around the country where residents cannot access alternative news outlets.

During a press event at Syracuse University on Monday night, Romney warned that it’s getting “dark out there” for the survival of democracy and the journalism industry.

As the keynote speaker at an SU ceremony to present the 2023 Toner Award for Excellence in Political Reporting, Romney said that when the public gets their news from sources without fact-checking, “that’s a problem.”

According to Romney, it is more difficult for politicians to communicate with the public because of the declining number and size of news organizations.

Worse for us is the public’s general apathy toward political campaigns, he said. “Earned media” used to be at the center of political campaigns.

While serving as a senator, Romney was the Republican presidential candidate in 2012. Furthermore, he served as the state’s governor in the past.

In the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, he told an audience of more than 250 people that the stakes had never been more significant for democracy.

Those being recognized today “have shown us the path,” according to Romney. He said they are “counting on you” to help “shine the light of truth” on the public electorate. 

He said he appreciated their work and was glad to be there with them.

The Toner Award is named after Robin Toner, the first female national political journalist for The New York Times and a graduate of Syracuse University in 1976.

The Robin Toner Program in Political Reporting was founded in 2008 after Toner died of cancer.

The former students also endowed an annual journalism award for the finest political reporting in the country.

This year’s award went to the team of reporters at Politico who revealed that the United States had a government shutdown. The Supreme Court had intended to overturn Roe v. Wade, the judgment that legalized abortion nationwide.

An honorable mention was given to ProPublica, a non-profit journalistic organization, and The Texas Tribune for their “Church Politics” series, which investigated the role of churches in electoral politics.