From Holden:

Nothing like a little White House Fraud to start your day.

Some of the nation’s largest news media companies, including The Associated Press, were counted last year by the government as small businesses for contracting purposes, inflating the Bush administration’s record of help to small companies.

Other media companies cited as small businesses included The New York Times Co., USA Today International Corp., Bloomberg L.P. and the Public Broadcasting Service, according to data the administration gave congressional investigators.

The media companies join other corporate giants like ExxonMobil and Microsoft Corp. that congressional investigators identified last week as companies listed as small businesses by the White House. The companies say the government erroneously gave them that designation and they did not portray themselves as small businesses to win the contracts.

The AP was cited as receiving five small business contracts valued at $31,600. Three of the contracts were awarded by the State Department, one was given by the U.S. Coast Guard and the fifth was from the Department of Transportation.