Conservative Media Update: Breitbart, Heritage Poach From National Review

Weigel
Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Jan. 16 2014 4:55 PM

Conservative Media Update: Breitbart, Heritage Poach From National Review

Four months ago the political world stood in awe of National Review's D.C. reporting team. National Review's work on the government beat had always been good, sure, but Washington editor Robert Costa blew away competitors with 10, 20 years of experience. Coverage of NR and Costa after the government shutdown was downright worshipful. Reporters like Jonathan Strong, Betsy Woodruff, Katrina Trinko, and Andrew Stiles turned the site into a must-read.

David Weigel David Weigel

David Weigel is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics

The headhunters came a-huntin'. In November the Washington Post poached Costa and turned him into a political correspondent. He could fill a role, coverage of the conservative movement and the GOP, that the paper had too often struggled with.* This month, National Review has lost two more reporters, albeit to other journals of the right. Strong, who had been considered as a Costa replacement, will instead run the D.C. team at Breitbart. ("Very excited about it," he says.)

Trinko has joined the Heritage Foundation as managing editor of the Foundry, a group blog that's expanding into a mini-news site with 11 staffers. The Foundry's also hiring an investigative reporter. The Foundry's new design is being hammered out by Atlantic Media Strategies, and expected to launch in April.

Advertisement

"We have something unique at Heritage," said the Foundry's editor-in-chief, Rob Bluey. "We have a bench of 100 really good research scholars who are very knowledgeable on policy issues. It brings credibility to policy debates and arguments when you are able to back it up with data."

I asked Bluey whether the Foundry was being built up into a sort of happy, chart-y Wonkblog of the right. Ezra Klein's project at the Washington Post grew from a personal blog to a multifaceted news site with four full-time reporters, and a tech spinoff (the Switch) that employed three more. 

"You do have the news component of Wonkblog where they break stories, and they have deep policy analysis," said Bluey. "I'd say we don't want the Foundry to be viewed as a blog anymore. With the changes we're making, with a new look we're working on, we should be viewed as a news site."

*No comment.

David Weigel is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics

TODAY IN SLATE

The World

The Budget Disaster that Sabotaged the WHO’s Response to Ebola

How Movies Like Contagion and Outbreak Distort Our Response to Real Epidemics

PowerPoint Is the Worst, and Now It’s the Latest Way to Hack Into Your Computer

Everything You Should Know About Today’s Eclipse

An Unscientific Ranking of Really, Really Old German Beers

Education

Welcome to 13th Grade!

Some high schools are offering a fifth year. That’s a great idea.

Culturebox

The Actual World

“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.

Want Kids to Delay Sex? Let Planned Parenthood Teach Them Sex Ed.

Can Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu Pull Off One More Louisiana Miracle?

  News & Politics
Politics
Oct. 22 2014 9:42 PM Landslide Landrieu Can the Louisiana Democrat use the powers of incumbency to save herself one more time?
  Business
Moneybox
Oct. 23 2014 11:51 AM It Seems No One Is Rich or Happy: I Looked
  Life
The Vault
Oct. 23 2014 12:02 PM Delightfully Awkward Studio Action Shots of Players, Used on Early Baseball Cards
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 23 2014 11:33 AM Watch Little Princesses Curse for the Feminist Cause
  Slate Plus
Working
Oct. 23 2014 11:28 AM Slate’s Working Podcast: Episode 2 Transcript Read what David Plotz asked Dr. Meri Kolbrener about her workday.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Oct. 23 2014 12:01 PM Who Is Constantine, and Should You Watch His New Show?
  Technology
Technology
Oct. 23 2014 11:45 AM The United States of Reddit  How social media is redrawing our borders. 
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Oct. 23 2014 7:30 AM Our Solar System and Galaxy … Seen by an Astronaut
  Sports
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.