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Conservative Site's Lead Story: "Registered Dem Killed Trayvon"

Also reminds readers that Zimmerman is Hispanic. "It's obviously newsworthy," says Continetti. "We do what we do."

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The front page of the Washington Free Beacon right now an advance in the story of slain Florida teen Trayvon Martin. The all-caps headline: "Registered Dem Killed Trayvon."

The story also points out that George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watch volunteer who shot the unarmed teenager, identifies as hispanic — not "white," as some outlets originally reported. The story cites left-wing pundits who have tried to pin the shooting on racism fueled by conservatives.

In response to a query about the newsworthiness of Zimmerman's party affiliation, Free Beacon editor Matthew Continetti e-mailed:

It's obviously newsworthy. This is a huge story and we are adding an important piece of context.

Since its launch last month, the Free Beacon has walked the line between being a conservative rival to the liberal, reported Think Progress, and a parody of it; this seems to err on the latter side.

Continetti also emailed:

We love BuzzFeed, but does a website that has George Takei taking a poll of straight people as a lead story really want to question our news judgment?

We do what we do, you do what you do. Love the site. Godspeed.

McKay Coppins is a senior writer for the BuzzFeed News politics team, and the author of The Wilderness, about the battle over the future of the Republican Party.

Contact McKay Coppins at

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