Friedman cites research suggesting that when newspapers close, taxes and fees are likely to increase and government borrowing costs may go up. "Your federal, state and local lawmakers ought to care whether their constituents have a newspaper that covers city council and school board meetings and explains how proposed new laws would affect them," he writes.
"Too many candidates let consultants convince them print is dead and what they really need is another shouty TV commercial or a glossy mailer comparing their opponent to Hitler," Friedman writes. "Local papers have a rich legacy of serving their communities, and that translates to trusted and respected brands. Marketing research firm Comscore says advertisers on high-quality news websites enjoy a 'halo effect' where reader loyalty translates to positive association with sponsor messages."
Also, newspapers "serve the audience candidates need to reach. Seven out of 10 frequent voters say they read local news in print or online, and 77% make campaign contributions," Friedman writes. "Most importantly, candidates will be communicating their support for journalists’ work in a tangible way. That ought to be worth more goodwill than the YouTube ads we all skip with a swipe and a sigh."