Gabriel Sherman

After The Fall
June 30, 2010

On Saturday night, April 24, 2010, five days before John Edwards’s mistress Rielle Hunter sat down with Oprah to talk about the by-then-infamous sex tape and other embarrassments that had destroyed his political career, the former presidential candidate showed up at the West End Wine Bar in downtown Durham, North Carolina. It was around ten o’clock, and Edwards wanted a glass of wine after finishing dinner with friends at a nearby restaurant. When he got to the door, Edwards was disappointed to learn the bar was closed for a private event.

Post Apocalypse
February 04, 2010

On July 2 of last year, Politico broke a startling story: The Washington Post was planning to host off-the-record salons at which sponsors would pay to mingle with D.C. eminences and Post writers. The dinners--the first of which had been advertised in Post fliers as an “exclusive opportunity to participate in the health-care reform debate among the select few who will actually get it done”--were to take place at the home of Katharine Weymouth, the Post’s publisher. Weymouth, granddaughter of legendary Post owner Katharine Graham, had only been on the job for a year and a half.

The Owner of 'Politico' Is Going After the 'Post.' Again.
October 27, 2009

Politico owner Robert Allbritton is planning to launch a local Washington D.C news website, TNR has learned. In his most direct challenge to The Washington Post since launching Politico, Allbritton is putting former editor Jim Brady in charge of the new Metro site, sources said. Details are still emerging, but this is what I've learned so far: The new site will feature a mix of original reporting, aggregation, and GPS-map features. The site will cover D.C and the suburbs, and echo Politico's aggressive, scoop-oriented focus. Allbritton's spokesperson couldn't be reached.

The Behind the Scenes Feud Between 'The Washington Post' and 'The New York Times'
October 17, 2009

Today's New York Times includes a "post-script" to the paper's Sept.12 piece that reported on the resignation of Charles Pelton, the former Washington Post executive at the center of the salon-gate controversy. In July, Politico broke news that the Post planned to host private dinners at the home of Post Publisher Katharine Weymouth, where corporate sponsors could mingle with Post journalists and senior Obama administration officials and policy-makers in an off-the-record setting. In the original Sept.

The Courtship
August 31, 2009

In the spring of 2005, New York Times columnist David Brooks arrived at then-Senator Barack Obama’s office for a chat. Brooks, a conservative writer who joined the Times in 2003 from The Weekly Standard, had never met Obama before. But, as they chewed over the finer points of Edmund Burke, it didn’t take long for the two men to click. “I don’t want to sound like I’m bragging,” Brooks recently told me, “but usually when I talk to senators, while they may know a policy area better than me, they generally don’t know political philosophy better than me.

What Did Olbermann Know And When Did He Know It
August 07, 2009

Yesterday, Keith Olbermann released the following statement to TV Newser about former Newsweek writer Richard Wolffe’s current position with the corporate PR firm Public Strategies, Inc.: The bloggers are leaving one component out, unfairly so: In April, I knew vaguely that Richard Wolffe had gone to work for a non-news firm, and that's about the last I heard of it. It was entirely concurrent with my mother's fatal illness, and I turned it over entirely to my management team. My first awareness that this was more than just a non-news job, was this week.

More On Wolffe: Why Are Olbermann And Msnbc Hedging On Wolffe Now?
August 05, 2009

Since news broke that Keith Olbermann would have to consider allowing former Newsweek writer Richard Wolffe back on "Countdown" due to his perceived conflict-of-interest as a member of Dan Bartlett's PR firm Public Strategies, one open question remains: Why are Olbermann and MSNBC hedging now? Wolffe's position at Public Strategies was never a secret. The company sent out a press release on March 30 announcing his arrival. Wolffe includes his title in his bio for his Daily Beast column, and his Wikipedia page reads: "Richard L.

Harris On The Washington Post: "the Sears, Roebuck Model Of Over"
July 22, 2009

Politico is having a good media month. First, Michael Wolff wrote glowingly about them in his Vanity Fair column (though he didn't always feel that way). And last night, Charlie Rose brought Politico owner Robert Allbritton, editor-in-chief John Harris, executive editor Jim Vande Hei, and senior reporter Ben Smith to his table for a chat. Rose largely praised the site, and allowed his guests to talk triumphantly about their winning formula.

Politico's Darkening Clouds
July 01, 2009

In the upcoming issue of Vanity Fair, the magazine's media critic Michael Wolff writes a surprisingly positive 3400-word column about Politico. Not everyone shares this glowing assessment of the web-print startup. Last month, Politico’s chief foreign policy writer David Cloud resigned after only six months on the job. “It wasn't a good fit for me,” Cloud told me by phone this afternoon. Cloud joined Politico in January.

Bob Woodward, Jim Jones And That Obama Book
June 30, 2009

Last month, I reported that Bob Woodward is at work on a new book about the Obama administration, which has been a cause of concern at the White House. At the time, sources told me that Woodward would likely focus his efforts on Obama's foreign policy, and the high-level debates that play out inside the West Wing. A favorite parlor game in Washington is guessing the identities of Woodward's (many) anonymous sources. This time around, speculation is that Woodward will turn to national security adviser Jim Jones, whom Woodward forged a relationship with.