Jennifer Rubin is an opinion columnist for the Washington Post. If you check her page on the Washington Post’s site, you’ll see she’s labeled as an “opinion writer reporting from a center-right perspective.” But 37 conservatives signed a letter asking the Post to stop suggesting Rubin is a conservative and, maybe, think about hiring someone who is.
.@MZHemingway at @FDRLST reported that 37 conservative leaders sent this letter to the @washingtonpost calling on the Post to stop identifying @JRubinBlogger as conservative. We also called for Post to hire conservative writer.
Check it out: pic.twitter.com/AcqUYg6hqj
— American Principles 🇺🇸 (@approject) October 4, 2018
From the Federalist:
“We, of course, respect the right of The Washington Post to employ whatever writers it pleases — even Jennifer Rubin. However, we ask for the sake of intellectual honesty that the Post cease to identify her as in any way ‘conservative,’” the group implored the Post. They also asked that the paper, which employs almost no columnists that represent the views of the vast majority of Republicans, consider dealing with that major problem more than two years after Donald Trump’s election as president shocked the media class.
“[W]e also respectfully request that you consider hiring a voice who can eloquently and effectively defend the positions held by our President, his party, and the millions of voters who elected him. We would be happy to provide recommendations.”
Signatories to the letter include Brent Bozell from the Media Research Center and author Michelle Malkin. As you can see, the letter isn’t asking that Rubin be fired, only that she not be labeled as a conservative or center-right when her output is clearly not that these days.
My impression was that Rubin was hired for as the Post’s right-leaning voice to offer some counterbalance to the work of their progressive opinion writer Greg Sargent. But Jen Rubin isn’t offering much in the way of balance these days. With the election of Trump, she has moved so far left that she and Sargent often seem to be covering the same ground. For example, on Tuesday Sargent wrote a column titled, “President Trump and the war on men.” It opens:
As the Brett M. Kavanaugh affair drags on, President Trump was asked Tuesday afternoon by a reporter if he has a message for “young men in America.” Trump said this:
It’s a very scary time for young men in America…
The next day, Jennifer Rubin wrote a column titled, “Trump doubles down on male victimhood” which opens:
President Trump on Tuesday cranked up the volume on his white male base’s primal scream to ear-shattering decibels. He worries that this is a “very scary time for young men” in America, who are at risk of being accused of things they didn’t do.
The articles themselves are not the same and I’m not suggesting one prompted the other. My point is only that the Post’s “center-right” columnist is mining the exact same territory as their progressive columnist. If you scroll through Rubin’s recent columns, you’ll be hard pressed to find one that strikes a conservative stance. The last two weeks, for example, have been an unrelenting barrage of anti-Kavanaugh columns echoing some of the talking points we’ve heard from Senate Democrats.
The Post has more than enough progressive readers to support two left-leaning opinion columnists. But at some point, they should stop pretending Rubin is offering a right-leaning take and hire someone who can actually represent another point of view. That person will, of course, be vilified, in the same way that Bari Weiss is at the NY Times for offering views from outside the progressive bubble. But if the Post cares about intellectual diversity, it should admit the obvious and make some changes.