New York Times Death Spiral Watch (Michael Falcone Edition)

Yet Another Reason John McCain Should Not Be President

The Walter Reed Middle School of Beverly Hills is on the attack::

Kate Klonick: Okay, the McCain-Walter Reed Middle School backdrop debacle is getting weirder by the second. Now the principal of the school is hammering McCain for using footage of the school during his convention speech without seeking the school's permission. Here's the statement from Donna Tobin, the principal...

It has been brought to the school's attention that a picture of the front of our school, Walter Reed Middle School, was used as a backdrop at the Republican National Convention. Permission to use the front of our school for the Republican National Convention was not given by our school nor is the use of our school's picture an endorsement of any political party or view.

One other interesting development: The California Democratic Party is actually holding a press conference in front of the school within minutes, where Dems will hit McCain for not knowing the difference between the school and Walter Reed Medical Center, which is believed to be the backdrop the McCain campaign really wanted. Though multiple news organizations are asking for clarification, the McCain campaign is still refusing to comment on questions about whether it had hoped to use the medical center as a backdrop and accidentally used the school instead. Hard to blame them...

Late update: Shortly after posting this, we got an email from Los Angeles Unified School District Board Member Tamar Galatzan who represents Walter Reed as part of her district. She had her own thoughts on McCain's use of the middle school:

Though I am flattered that Senator McCain chose to use a school from my district as backdrop to his remarks at the Republican National Convention, I wished he had checked with me first. As a strong believer in public education, I don't think the Senator is the most appropriate person to showcase one of the premier schools in the Los Angeles Unified School District. He is unwilling to bring fairness and equity to No Child Left Behind and ensure that schools like Reed get the resources they need from the Federal Government. From what I've heard, that's not a priority for the McCain/Palin ticket.