There are less extreme examples, including the people with actual backgrounds in journalism who transitioned back-and-forth between professional politics and news reporting. There’s CNN’s Jake Tapper, who once served as press secretary to former Rep. Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky, D-Pa. There’s Diane Sawyer, who served as a staff assistant to former President Richard Nixon. CNN’s Chief National Security Correspondent Jim Sciutto is a former Obama appointee. He worked the State Department from 2011 to 2013 as chief of staff to U.S. Ambassador Gary Locke. And so on and so on.
The point: Isgur is hardly a first. Complaining about the issue only now, after so many in journalism have follwed the exact same path, suggests the outcry this week is not about protecting newsrooms from political biases so much as it’s about partisan gate-keeping.
What’s funny about the Isgur freak out is that no one except for CNN’s brass seems to know what she has been hired to do. We know that she’ll report to political director David Chalian, but that’s about it. Not even CNN’s Brian Stelter seems to know what her title entails, and he works for the network. We don’t know what purpose she’ll serve at CNN, but we know we’re angry about it! Again, I’m sure the fact that she worked for Republicans is just a minor detail in all of this.