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Posts Tagged ‘Christina Bellantoni’

The DC’s Alexis Levinson Jumps to Roll Call

Alexis Levinson, formerly of The Daily Caller, will now cover Senate races for Roll Call, Editor-in-Chief Christina Bellantoni announced today. Levinson had a similar beat at The DC, breaking news about Rep. Phil Gingrey’s Senate campaign staff exodus and traveling to New Hampshire and South Carolina to cover the presidential race.

Bellantoni also announced that Kyle Trygstad has been promoted to Associate Politics Editor. He will continue to serve as lead reporter on Senate campaigns as well.

Allie Robinson was also brought over from CQ as a Copy Editor. Check out the whole memo after the jump…

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David Eldridge Leaves TWT for Roll Call

In a letter to staff, Roll Call editor-in-chief Christina Bellantoni announced yesterday the hiring of David Eldridge away from The Washington Times, where he had been assistant editor on the politics desk.* She also announced several promotions and newsroom re-organizations.

Eldridge, who starts his new gig on March 31st, will now serve as Roll Call‘s House editor. He will work with Emma Dumain, Dan Newhouser, and Matt Fuller on the “218″ blog, and be their main point of contact for short and long-term projects. He comes to Roll Call amidst a transition for the paper. Bellantoni herself started a mere 8 weeks ago, and a major re-org had already happened right before she arrived. That blueprint was augmented somewhat by the sudden departure of Peter Anthony last week, and now, with a flurry of promotions and the hiring of Eldridge, Bellantoni is attempting to right the ship.

Eldridge is leaving an arguably more troubled paper, also in the midst of major renovation. TWT Editor John Solomon has been trying to reinvent his conservative daily as a multimedia investigative enterprise since he was brought on last summer.

There were more adjustments and promotions announced yesterday as well, though they are a bit too numerous for us to regurgitate here. For more detail on the latest Roll Call re-org, check out Bellantoni’s letter to staff, after the jump.

*Update 2:49: This post previously said that David Eldridge was most recently the managing editor of TWT‘s website. That was inaccurate. Though he was once the managing editor of the website, he is now assistant editor on the politics desk. The current managing editor of the site is Ian Bishop.

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‘MTP’ Launches Midweek ‘Express’ Videos, Because Why Not?

We were sitting around our office suite  here at FBDC headquarters the other day, drinking mai-tais and watching archival footage of “Meet the Press,” when we had a thought: “Why aren’t there more places online to watch David Gregory talk about things?” It was a vexing problem that today -thankfully -has been solved.

“MTP” launched a new video series today called “Meet the Press Express (Brought to you by GE).” The videos will feature Gregory and other folks from NBC’s DC bureau drinking “coffee” with “both seasoned and up-and-coming reporters,”  and having “smart, casual conversation about what’s driving the political agenda that week.” You know like Politico’s “Driving the Day,” but sitting down. Or like “The Talk,” but boring.

The web show premier features such DC notables as The Atlantic’s Molly BallRoll Call’s Christina Bellantoni and Washington Post’s Wesley Lowery. And don’t worry -there are plenty of March Madness references. There’s even some “political bracketology,” wherein Bellantoni scrawls the names of Congressmen on a piece of paper and says sports things. Yay news! Smashing sports and politics together in a completely nonsensical jumble that is useless to both sports fans and news consumers is awesome! All in all, it’s an excellent way to spend several minutes of your workday.

Also -conjecture about Jeb Bush, speculation about Rand Paul, and all the conventional wisdom you could possibly want. Behold the miracle of cost-free content production, after the jump!

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Meredith Shiner Out at Roll Call

It seems that this might be the beginning of another hemorrhage at Roll Call. We reported two days ago on the explosive exit  of Chief Product Officer Peter Anthony. Now, in an email to sources, Congressional writer Meredith Shiner announced her departure from the org.* She warned people that while her CQ Roll Call email address will remain open for another month, any emails sent there could and probably would be reviewed internally and that no one should have any expectation of privacy. Shiner joined Roll Call in 2011 after nearly two years at Politico.

*Update 7:12 p.m. : Meredith wrote us to say that her departure was not sudden. We’ve edited the post to reflect that. Her full e-mail to sources after the jump, plus the announcement from Roll Call editor-in-chief Christina Bellantoni after the jump…

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Sara Bondioli Leaves Roll Call for HuffPo

Roll Call Editor-in-Chief Christina Bellantoni announced today that Assistant Managing Editor Sara Bondioli is leaving to become Deputy Politics Editor at the Huffington Post.

“Sara first came to Roll Call nearly five years ago, in mid-March 2009.” Bellantoni wrote in an email to staff. “She worked as a copy editor, deputy copy chief and then copy chief, all the while helping us grow, and working with us to make our writing sharper, our papers better and our days brighter. She has caught countless errors, posted countless stories and added countless calories to our diets.” (Apparently Sara was very generous with her beer and baked goods. Sounds like the perfect co-worker to us!)

Sara’s last day at Roll Call will be March 14, and she starts at HuffPo on March 24. Congratulations Sara!

Roll Call‘s Shira Center Begins Harvard Fellowship Today

shira_toeplitz_online

Roll Call politics editor Shira T. Center has been named one of the Harvard Institute of Politics’ Resident Fellows. As such, she will be away for three months in Cambridge to teach study groups on Gender, Politics, and the Media. While she’s away, Center will continue to work part time for Roll Call, mostly in the mornings. Political reporter Kyle Trygstad will also be filling in as an interim politics editor.

“I was introduced to the idea of doing this a year ago when my boss, Christina Bellantoni, was a fellow in 2011.” Center told us. “Then a year ago, (former deputy chief of staff for Eric Cantor) John Murray invited me up to speak during one of his study groups. I was really impressed by the program and by the people there.”

Shira’s study groups will be not for credit and open to anyone in the Harvard community, including graduate and undergrad students. She plans on having some special guest speakers, though she couldn’t tell us who exactly.

“I will say that I plan to have a variety of fellow journalists, some political operatives and an elected official or two.”

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How Do You SOTU?

SOTUSure, you can watch the big speech on plain old TV tonight if you want to, but that is by no means the only way to get your SOTU fix this year. Here’s how the political media are covering their “Super Bowl” tonight:

The Atlantic and National Journal will be hosting a State of the Union Congressional Debrief on the morning of Wednesday, January 29.  Molly Ball and Steve Clemons of The Atlantic and Ronald Brownstein of Atlantic Media will be joined on stage by members of congress for a discussion and expert analysis of the President’s speech.  Speakers include Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Congressman Joaquin Castro (D-TX), Rep. Diana DeGette (D-CO), Sen. Deb Fischer (R-NE), and Sen. John Hoeven (R-ND), and Rep. Aaron Schock (R-IL).

CNN will start coverage at 7 PM with Wolf Blitzer, Anderson Cooper, and Jake Tapper. Guests include Jon Favreau and Karen Hughes. Throughout the night, Jim Scuitto will be reporting from Iran, Tom Foreman will subject Obama’s claims on economic inequality to a “Reality Check,” and Suzanne Malveaux will moderate a focus group in Des Moines, IA. Jake Tapper will lead the post-speech coverage, followed by John King. And of course, Peter Hamby will be live streaming his Politi-cast during the SOTU and the responses at CNN.com.

TIME will stream its first-ever live webcast on the President’s speech and GOP response starting Tuesday at 8:30PM at TIME.com. The coverage will be anchored by TIME Senior Political Analyst Mark Halperin, and joined with analysis from Michael Scherer, Bobby Ghosh, Rana Foroohar, and Callie Schweitzer.

Al Jazeera American begins coverage at 6 PM  with Tony Harris, Ali Velshi, David Shuster and Richelle Carey. Guests will include Senator John McCain (R-AZ) and former New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson. AJA social editors will live blog the speech at http://alj.am/SOTUJohn SeigenthalerJoie Chen and Ray Suarez take over coverage at 7 PM. Coverage continues at midnight with “America Tonight.”

Roll Call will be hosting a watch party here starting at 8:40 PM. Political Editor Shira T. Center will moderate a Google hangout that features Senior Editor David Hawkings and Editor-in-Chief Christina Bellantoni to preview President Obama’s address. After the speech, Bellantoni will take you live inside Statuary Hall to get instant reactions from members. Center and Hawkings will join the conversation to talk about the implications of the president’s address.

Politico will start coverage at 8:30 PM with Mike Allen, John F. Harris, Anna Palmer, Manu Raju via live stream here. You will also be able to submit questions to POLITICO’s Facebook page after the speech using Facebook’s Q and A feature, for answers from POLITICO Deputy White House Editor Rebecca Sinderbrand. They will also host an event the day after SOTU presented by the Innovation Alliance at 8 AM at the Capitol Hilton. Guests to be announced.

Huffington Post will live stream a speech from Rosanne Barr at 11 PM at HuffPost Live, immediately following the Tea Party response.

Bellantoni Snags Roll Call’s Top Edit Job

Christina-Bellantoni_largeFishbowlDC has learned that Roll Call alum Christina Bellantoni will leave her post as Political Editor of PBS Newshour and return to the Capitol Hill rag as Editor-in-Chief.  When she departed Roll Call in 2010, Bellantoni held the position of Associate Politics Editor.

“This feels like coming home. I’m so excited about becoming Editor-in-Chief of Roll Call, which still proudly acts as the pulse of Capitol Hill in the must-read spirit Sid Yudain envisioned nearly 60 years ago,” Bellantoni said in a release the company will issue at noon today. “Roll Call is the best brand in the business of covering Congress and boasts a talented team I can’t wait to work with once more.”

Prior to her first stint at Roll Call, Christina served as White House Correspondent for Talking Points Memo and before that, The Washington Times.

In her new position, Bellantoni will oversee editorial print and digital platforms and report to Chief Content Officer David Rapp.  Congrats Christina!  Full press release after the jump.

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On BuzzFeed, Boogers and Ethics

Writing a story about someone else’s booger feature is no easy task. On some email requests I put a simple, bland, “request for comment.” On others, I went for shock value: “BuzzFeed’s booger post.” It wasn’t plotted. I imagined some might find it funnier than others.

On Tuesday night, BuzzFeed‘s Benny Johnson took Washington’s political and media worlds by surprise by creating a GIF feature about House Speaker John Boehner allegedly checking out his boogers. BuzzFeed Political Editor McKay Coppins promoted the story, even guided readers to it on Twitter.

The headline reads: “John Boehner Looks at His Boogers During the State of the Union.”

Who among us would have the mental fortitude to look away from a Boehner booger post? “It looks like a first-step by BuzzFeed into honest coverage,” said former TWT Editor and Public Affairs exec Sam Dealey. “After all, everyone — the Speaker, the public and evidently BuzzFeed’s reporter too, was bored by the speech and looking for anything even remotely more interesting.”

Boogers are interesting. But by and large, the editors and journalists around town that we interviewed opposed the booger post. “Dumb and dumber; political coverage as booger op? What next: beaver shot?” asked Washingtonian‘s media writer Harry Jaffe. WTOP’s Jim Farley also expressed journalistic outrage. “I believe it is over the top,” he said. “It would have been like showing video of George H.W. Bush throwing up on the Japanese Prime Minister at a State Dinner. A private moment.  Would we show video of Michelle Obama’s skirt blowing up on a windy day?”

Um, there’s actual video showing Bush throwing up? As it turns out, there is.

And by the way, there’s no judgment here. We’ve written about everything from Larry King passing gas on air and a journo popping a zit at a party to females showing ample amounts of cleavage and breasts on TV. Suffice it say, BuzzFeed can write about the Speaker’s alleged boogers if they want to and there won’t be any ethical bitching from us.

And yet we couldn’t help but wonder, is this, in part, the psychological result of our miniscule attention spans and around-the-clock reporting? That we now require boogers to grab our collective attention?

“Poking fun at people in power has always been been part of political journalism,” Coppins told FishbowlDC when asked to comment on the matter. “Dead-tree newspapers used to do it with political cartoons; now the internet does it with GIFs and memes. What actually struck me most about this State of the Union was how many other news sites were competing with us on that front. A year ago, we would have been the only ones GIFing Marco Rubio’s reach for the water bottle; this year we were racing with The Atlantic‘s Twitter feed.”

But some journalists thought BuzzFeed had slipped beneath themselves. “That’s certainly a headline you don’t see every day,” said a longtime Washington editor who preferred to remain anonymous. “But regardless, this is over the line. A classic example of something that gets hits, but is in poor taste. The post appeals to the 10-year-old in all of us, and that’s not a good thing. BuzzFeed is better than this.”

A cable news insider agreed, saying, Read more

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day

“No one cares what’s said on Sunday talk shows, Martha.” — NPR’s Steve Inskeep on the ABC “This Week” roundtable, joking to host Martha Raddatz. The joke is in reference to Sec. of State Hillary Clinton‘s remarks before Congress last week in which she said appearing on Sunday talk shows is not her preferred way of spending her Sunday mornings.

Reporter robbed of copy of Advise and Consent

“To whoever stole the $3 copy of Allen Drury’s Pulitzer-winning but out-of-print Advise and Consent off my doorstep: I hope you enjoy it.” — Kasie Hunt, political reporter, NBC News. Hunt told FishbowlDC the book was in a box from Amazon. So far, no leads.

Senator’s parents are named what

“In his opening remarks, Biden took note of the presence of the senator’s parents, Moon and Verna Landrieu, as well as many of their nine children and 37 grandchildren. ‘I love these Landrieu family gatherings,’ he said.– A weekend White House VPOTUS Pool Report referring to Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.).

Comedian puts McCain on level of Applebees

“Dear @ThisWeekABC : Bragging about an ‘Exclusive’ interview w/ @SenJohnMcCain is like bragging you scored a table at Applebees.” — Lizz Winstead, comedian and co-creator of “The Daily Show.”

The Geek Squad

“Sitting behind @daveweigel. I can see his computer screen. It’s just a waterfall of raw code like in the matrix.” — NationalReviewOnline‘s Jonah Goldberg in reference to the most wildly popular Boybander around town outside WaPo‘s Ezra Klein. Slate‘s Weigel was spotted at the National Review summit Friday night, where he was standoffish.

Important Q to Ponder: “Which interview serves up more softballs to Obama, TNR or 60 minutes?” — Blake Hounshell, managing editor of Foreign Policy magazine.

Time for better dreams?

“My dream on my next trip to New York: meeting @chrislhayes. My likely reality: missing #uppers because I stayed up too late.” — Jesse Taylor, founder and editor of Pandagon.net. He was previously an internet consultant for Jerry Springer‘s political group, Make Ohio Blue.

Journo irritated by weather

“What the hell is that symbol on Monday, & why will it be 70 one day, snowing 2 days later?”– PBS Political Director Christina Bellantoni.

Spotted: Radio host for 94.7 FreshFM Tommy McFly in the toiletries isle at Target in Columbia Heights.

Unnecessary Tweet of the Day

“Anyone else realize New York is sexist? If there’s a Man-hattan shouldn’t there be a Woman-hattan???” — Ron Meyer Jr., spokesman for American Majority Action.

Peter Ogburn and Eddie Scarry contributed to this report.

Convo Between Two Journos… Read more

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