US Election 2016

Hillary Clinton: Nominated for president, but not for the front page

The Newseum in Washington displays front pages from 50 states - Hillary Clinton is only on 19 of them
Image caption The Newseum in Washington displays front pages from 50 states. Hillary Clinton is only on 19 of them.

Hillary Clinton just became the first woman in US history nominated for president by a major party. So why is her husband on the front page of so many newspapers?

Instead of pictures of Hillary Clinton, many newspapers across the country chose instead to feature large photos of her husband, former president Bill Clinton, or even her onetime rival for the nomination, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders.

Image caption The headline of the Chicago Tribune for 27 July fails to distinguish which Clinton won the nomination

It did not take long for dismay to be registered online.

"YOU HAD ONE JOB," tweeted Eric Haywood, with an image of the Chicago Tribune's headline: "Clinton claims nomination" with a large photo of Bill instead of Hillary.

"Simple proof of enduring sexism: no Hillary, or even a woman, on the front page after 1st woman nominated president," tweeted Anne Helen Petersen over the Wall Street Journal's choice to print a large picture of Sanders below the headline "Clinton Wins Historic Nomination".

(A later edition of the Wall Street Journal swapped out the photo of Sanders for one of Secretary Clinton.)

Indeed, outside of the Newseum in Washington, the trend was on display in the glass cases which each morning contain the current day's front page from newspapers from all 50 states.

Of the front pages on display the morning after Clinton's historic nomination, her picture was only on 19 of them.

Image caption The Oklahoman featured the word "change-maker" for Hillary Clinton, but not her image

Some papers didn't mention the nomination at all, some chose crowd shots from the DNC and one ran a large story about Donald Trump Jr instead.

It is true that Bill Clinton gave the keynote address at the convention Tuesday evening, and that Sanders motioned that the delegates accept Secretary Clinton as the party's nominee. It is also true that Secretary Clinton appeared only on a large screen in the convention hall via satellite at the very end of the night, perhaps too late for some newspapers' deadlines. Nevertheless, some front pages featured past images of her or at least women in attendance at the nomination.

The New York Times, for instance, chose a large image of three women in the crowd at the DNC cheering with a sign that reads, "Girl Power".

Image copyright Getty Images

"HERSTORY", proclaims the Orange County Register over an image of Hillary Clinton's face on the screens at the DNC, with a smaller image of her husband Bill looking up to her in salute.

Rebecca DeShaney, who was visiting the Newseum this morning from her home outside Indianapolis, Indiana, said she thinks that Hillary Clinton's absence from the front pages does say something about how "male-centred" American media still is.

"People will argue, 'Well, he gave the speech'. But it should be about her. She's reached this monumental platform," she said. "So I think we have a long way to go."

She paused in front of the newspaper from her home state.

"I'm so proud of the Indianapolis Star," she said. Their headline: "History Made", with an archival image of Hillary Clinton beaming. Her husband is no where in sight.