Obama campaign strategist buys The New Republic

posted at 2:30 pm on March 9, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Three years ago almost to the day, Fast Company magazine profiled Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes as the man who made Barack Obama the 44th President of the United States.  Today, Hughes has announced his purchase of the venerable liberal magazine The New Republic and his intention to take over as publisher and editor-in-chief:

Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes, who left the social network to work on the online arm of Barack Obama’s 2008 White House campaign, has bought a majority stake in The New Republic magazine.

Hughes, 28, who was Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg’s roommate at Harvard University, announced the move in an online letter to readers of the publication, a nearly century-old bastion of liberal political thought. …

“When few people are investing in media institutions with such bold aims as ‘enlightenment to the problems of the nation,’ I believe we must,” he said.

Hughes, who is assuming the titles of publisher and editor-in-chief, said the Web “has introduced a competitive, and some might argue hostile, landscape for long, in-depth, resource-intensive journalism.

Congratulations to Hughes, who has had an incredible run of success, quite obviously.  The infusion of capital into TNR can’t be a bad thing for a print publication these days, of course.    If he chooses to invest in TNR, well, it’s his money, and God bless.  It’s not as though TNR was an unbiased source of news and analysis, nor did they pretend to be.  They have always been interested in promoting the liberal viewpoint, perhaps not as far Left as The Nation, but both publications have produced serious and interesting journalism regardless.

However, one has to wonder whether that will continue to be the case. For instance, as liberal as Marty Peretz is, he has always been a hawk on Israel.  Will that continue under Hughes, now that he’s replacing Peretz as editor-in-chief?  And while being a majority owner in a magazine is all the practical prerequisite one needs to run the publication, exactly how is Hughes qualified otherwise to run a magazine — and what kind of editorial direction can we expect from someone whose resumé includes building a social network and acting as the online-flack-in-chief for Barack Obama?  I suspect that any inclination that existed at TNR to criticize Obama administration policies will evaporate, although Hughes may still pleasantly surprise us with an independent point of view.

At one time, TNR described itself as “the in-flight magazine of Air Force One.”  Let’s hope it doesn’t take the Davis Guggenheim route towards being the mouthpiece of Air Force One.


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Liberal media mogul buys liberal media outlet. More on this breaking news at 11. Seriously, getting tired of pretending to be outraged over stuff that happens all the time in the business world.

In the meantime, interesting that Hot Air has not blogged about the Koch Brothers attempted hostile takeover of the Cato Institute. The founders of the Cato Institute are in all-out war against each other.

AngusMc on March 9, 2012 at 2:36 PM

Heh Ed, was thinking of guggy when reading this piece

Guggy part deux

cmsinaz on March 9, 2012 at 2:36 PM

Yay, a young liberal puke!

blatantblue on March 9, 2012 at 2:37 PM

When will Obama strategists make it official and buy ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN…

changer1701 on March 9, 2012 at 2:38 PM

although Hughes may still pleasantly surprise us with an independent point of view.

Yea, right, and Obama’s Unicorns and magic fairy dust will finally arrive and prove to be everything they were promised to be.

SWalker on March 9, 2012 at 2:40 PM

They have always been interested in promoting the liberal viewpoint, perhaps not as far Left as The Nation, but both publications have produced serious and interesting journalism regardless.

Ha ha ha! Priceless!

Nethicus on March 9, 2012 at 2:40 PM

AngusMc on March 9, 2012 at 2:36 PM

Outraged? Not at all. I find it interesting when people print junk and call it “news.” It’s also quite entertaining to see what happens to rags (what was it, Newsweek?) that seem to have lost some journalistic integrity. If liberal media mogul buys it and makes a success out of it, then good for him!

Just pardon me it I don’t hold my breath….

Turtle317 on March 9, 2012 at 2:40 PM

Well, the New Republic hasn’t been influential since the mid-1990s, so that’s why the massive shrug from me. No one quotes it or cites it anymore — unlike Cato, which is why I find that story much more interesting.

AngusMc on March 9, 2012 at 2:43 PM

I should care about this …… why?

Bitter Clinger on March 9, 2012 at 2:43 PM

There is an old saying about a fool and his money.

Adjoran on March 9, 2012 at 2:44 PM

The New Republic.

he pathetic thing is – a “Republic” is anathema to Socialists.

When the People have to be forced, compelled … mandated and dictated to, and when this is what you want for the people … a “Republic” is in the way of your Utopia.

OhEssYouCowboys on March 9, 2012 at 2:44 PM

I should care about this …… why?

Bitter Clinger on March 9, 2012 at 2:43 PM

Think of it as laying down a marker for the future.

Ed Morrissey on March 9, 2012 at 2:45 PM

When will Obama strategists make it official and buy ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN…changer1701

Why buy the cows when milk is free?

indyvet on March 9, 2012 at 2:46 PM

From what I understand, no JournoTard has every tried combining light, personality driven news with leftist opinion.

I’m sure this unique product will take off.

MNHawk on March 9, 2012 at 2:47 PM

One day historians will look back on America, and wonder why it took American’s so damned long to apply the stout hemp rope and streetlamp solution to the Fifth Column Treasonous Media.

SWalker on March 9, 2012 at 2:47 PM

I love it when libs throw their money down rabbit holes…more please.

d1carter on March 9, 2012 at 2:48 PM

It won’t be as much fun as he thinks it will be and he’ll get bored. Riding a dynamite start-up in an emerging industry and flogging a mature company in a dying one are two different things.

trigon on March 9, 2012 at 2:48 PM

When will Obama strategists make it official and buy ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN…

changer1701 on March 9, 2012 at 2:38 PM

Nah, they can save the money there, those networks are already 100% Guggy with The Won.

kirkill on March 9, 2012 at 2:48 PM

bold aims as ‘enlightenment to the problems of the nation,’

Allow me to enlighten you, kid. One of the biggest problems of this nation is the fact that it has a big-spending liberal moron in the presidency, thanks to other liberal morons like yourself.

AZCoyote on March 9, 2012 at 2:48 PM

I’ve been invited several times by friends to join Facebook. So, so happy I declined.

kirkill on March 9, 2012 at 2:49 PM

Liberals all think the exact same way, don’t they?

“It’s not working?? Double down!”

“This liberal publication is bleeding money?? Make it more liberal!”

NotCoach on March 9, 2012 at 2:49 PM

There’s that “Harvard” word, again.

OhEssYouCowboys on March 9, 2012 at 2:51 PM

Should rename it to “Marxism Daily”….or maybe just “Toilet Paper”

search4truth on March 9, 2012 at 2:51 PM

See, one route to communism is if individual owners exploit capitalism, buy media entities fair and square, and then just bow to the state.

Who needs regulations when corporations willingly cede control over content and manufacturing, to the ruling power.

contrarytopopularbelief on March 9, 2012 at 2:51 PM

The New Republic Propagandist

darwin on March 9, 2012 at 2:52 PM

Think of it as laying down a marker for the future.

Ed Morrissey on March 9, 2012 at 2:45 PM

Yeah, but a liberal buying a liberal magazine isn’t exactly “breaking news”.

Bitter Clinger on March 9, 2012 at 2:54 PM

Well, the New Republic hasn’t been influential since the mid-1990s, so that’s why the massive shrug from me. No one quotes it or cites it anymore — unlike Cato, which is why I find that story much more interesting.

AngusMc on March 9, 2012 at 2:43 PM

I can see that. But the Koch brothers exerting a hostile take over? Thing we have to remember is, the Koch’s are Libertarians, and even if they manage to score a magazine gig, that would only give the left something else to misdirect their ire.

But that’s just my opinion.

Turtle317 on March 9, 2012 at 2:57 PM

Liberals love capitalism when it gets them their propaganda machines.

Sammo21 on March 9, 2012 at 2:58 PM

“with such bold aims as ‘enlightenment to the problems of the nation,’ I believe we must,”

WOW….. It hits the nail on the head. We know you Chris Hughes, we have known others just like you, that think anyone who does not agree with you needs to be…fixed or changed.

Be prepared to be “enlightened”. How much truth telling is involved in the “enlightenment” process? Will it hurt? Is it going to take more than 4 more years of this administration for us ALL to become ONE with “enlightenment”? How will we know when we have all achieved the height of this “enlightenment”?

OK, these people are uber CREEPY mind control freaks…. alert, alert… run away from them fast!

USA an obsolete country that used to be a FREE nation of FREE people, will become kinda agitated if they find out your messing with their inner being. “Resist we Must 2012″

ActinUpinTexas on March 9, 2012 at 2:58 PM

Let’s hope it doesn’t take the Davis Guggenheim route towards being the mouthpiece of Air Force One.

Well he will have competition with TIME and NEWSPEAK.

GarandFan on March 9, 2012 at 3:02 PM

It’s ultra left now. It will be ultra left with this guy running it. Nothing really newsworthy here.

angryed on March 9, 2012 at 3:02 PM

Headline: Young rich liberal blows his fortune on outdated liberal rag

faraway on March 9, 2012 at 3:03 PM

This guy bought The New Republic? He must be looking for a tax write off.

Mike Honcho on March 9, 2012 at 3:05 PM

exactly how is Hughes qualified otherwise to run a magazine

Hey! Jerry Jones makes all the decisions for the Cowboys and he owns that company! See how well they’re doing with that set up?

I think you owe Hughes an apology for that remark.

rihar on March 9, 2012 at 3:06 PM

I love heartwarming stories about how wannabe socialists profit from what capitalism makes possible.

tdpwells on March 9, 2012 at 3:07 PM

Yeah, but a liberal buying a liberal magazine isn’t exactly “breaking news”.

Bitter Clinger on March 9, 2012 at 2:54 PM

The news is noting that ‘the kid who made Obama president’ is buying and running a journo mag (rag?).

I believe Ed is preparing us for the onslaught of puff pieces masquerading as ‘hard hitting journalism’ that is about to come flying out of this particular mag in this a very important election year.

Who wants to bet that this particular magazine will begin to be quoted with far more regularity and with far more emphasis on it’s truthiness than it has in the last 10 years.

StompUDead on March 9, 2012 at 3:08 PM

When will Obama strategists make it official and buy ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN…

changer1701 on March 9, 2012 at 2:38 PM

Why buy the cow when you’re getting the milk free.

antipc on March 9, 2012 at 3:11 PM

That’s too bad, actually. TNR has published a lot of non-lefty writers over the years, including Fred Barnes, Charles Krauthammer, Charles Paul Freund and the late (and lamented) Michael Kelly. And it was the one opinion journal on the Left that would allow a little heterodox thinking — Mickey Kaus is also an alumnus.

Those days are over, apparently.

Mr. D on March 9, 2012 at 3:14 PM

New Republic…..yeah….chuckle……

itsspideyman on March 9, 2012 at 3:27 PM

Another filthy rich guilt ridden white guy from Harvard. They grow on trees there.

Hummer53 on March 9, 2012 at 3:29 PM

Will he be re-hiring Stephen Glass as Editor?

TugboatPhil on March 9, 2012 at 3:31 PM

“When few people are investing in media institutions with such bold aims as ‘enlightenment to the problems of the nation,’ I believe we must,” he said.

Economy…?

… Never heard of it.

Seven Percent Solution on March 9, 2012 at 3:32 PM

Dewb!

KOOLAID2 on March 9, 2012 at 3:35 PM

I am quite sure the writing at TNR shall to new heights- oh, would that could be as lofty a publication as was George!

And with a little luck, this kid will pursue his private pilot’s license.

M240H on March 9, 2012 at 3:51 PM

The New what?

Oh.

Nevermind. I never read it.

moochy on March 9, 2012 at 3:58 PM

Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes, who left the social network to work on the online arm of Barack Obama’s 2008 White House campaign, has bought a majority stake in The New Republic magazine.

A fool and his money are soon parted. This kid deserves to die destitute and in great pain for what he did to the US and is trying to further with his purchase of the fiction mag, New Republic … which doesn’t even print believable fiction. What a joke.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on March 9, 2012 at 3:59 PM

The New Republic lives on – a communist playground for rich, northeastern white kids who despise their vulgar parents.

jan3 on March 9, 2012 at 4:00 PM

Will he be re-hiring Stephen Glass as Editor?

TugboatPhil on March 9, 2012 at 3:31 PM

+100000000

Mr. D on March 9, 2012 at 4:01 PM

I am quite sure the writing at TNR shall to new heights- oh, would that could be as lofty a publication as was George!

And with a little luck, this kid will pursue his private pilot’s license.

M240H on March 9, 2012 at 3:51 PM

I almost forgot about that awful joke of a magazine. That was awful. And the way it folded immediately after the dead kennedy showed that it was never meant to exist, to begin with.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on March 9, 2012 at 4:02 PM

Was this person portrayed in “Social Network”? Was it Justin Timberlake?

Madmill on March 9, 2012 at 4:04 PM

“When few people are investing in media institutions with such bold aims as ‘enlightenment to the problems of the nation,’ I believe we must,” he said.

This isn’t even correct English. The magazine’s aim is “enlightenment to problems”? Enlightenment is a human quality. Problems aren’t human beings. You can enlighten people regarding problems. You can highlight problems, or solve problems. But strive for “enlightenment to problems”? No.

He’s off to an impressive start.

WhatSlushfund on March 9, 2012 at 4:20 PM

So, they’ll probably be writing stories with a left leaning POV, now? That will be a refreshing change.

rogaineguy on March 9, 2012 at 4:28 PM

New media pioneer buys aging, failing, dinosaur media relic.

OxyCon on March 9, 2012 at 5:21 PM

Was this person portrayed in “Social Network”? Was it Justin Timberlake?
Madmill on March 9, 2012 at 4:04 PM

Different guy. You’re thinking of Sean Parker.

contrarytopopularbelief on March 9, 2012 at 5:28 PM

He’s got money to burn, and this will flambee a lot.

I just hope taxpayers don’t have to bail him out eventually for his losses.

profitsbeard on March 9, 2012 at 6:14 PM

Did he get it for a dollar?

mrt721 on March 9, 2012 at 7:09 PM

Let’s hope it doesn’t take the Davis Guggenheim route towards being the mouthpiece of Air Force One.

Kind of thought it already was.

AZfederalist on March 9, 2012 at 8:40 PM

He’s got a BA Arts and Lit, he’s gay, he was invited to Bilderberg Group, but worst of all…he’s white, he even looks Nordic. Perhaps he didn’t understand CRT. Time for his to push his sh!t (pun intended)

As for CATO, it’s a disagreement over voting rights as well as previous founders stake that was basically erased. If you want to follow it, I would suggest Volokh. Last I think they were up to 8 of 17 on the board. It’s a bit hostile, but nothing is illegal, and will work itself out before the Courts.

Alot of worthy items do not make the front page, some relegated to headlines, some not even put up. All the campaign articles are annoying though, seems excessive. Like that KC boy that was set on fire, apparently there is anti-white racism in the school system itself. American Thinker had an article on it the other day.

John Kettlewell on March 9, 2012 at 11:12 PM

New Republic to be renamed, “New Unicorn”.

Lourdes on March 10, 2012 at 3:37 PM

John Kettlewell on March 9, 2012 at 11:12 PM

Ha, I was going to write, “he’s gay, isn’t he” but thought I’d keep that to myself, then I read your comments. So, he’s gay, apparently.

Lourdes on March 10, 2012 at 3:38 PM

Once upon a time, people actually read Rolling Stone and took most of it seriously. Then it relocated to New York where the editor and publisher, who was/is gay, took the magazine into full-on homosexual culture and activism and few have read it since, except other homosexuals.

Lourdes on March 10, 2012 at 3:41 PM

A kid made Obama President?

That explains a lot.

Mr Galt on March 11, 2012 at 3:50 PM

Prescient as always, Ed.

Common Sense Floridian on February 14, 2013 at 3:16 PM