Loading...
Politics

Sidney Harman Buys Newsweek; Rep. Jane Harman Vows Hands Off

Comments (0)

By

Mon, Aug 2, 2010 at 2:18 PM

click to enlarge Jane Harman, D-Venice
  • Jane Harman, D-Venice
The Washington Post Co. has found a buyer for Newsweek, its money-losing magazine that is stumbling into the digital age: Sidney Harman, the 91-year-old husband of Rep. Jane Harman, D-Venice.

Donald Graham, the chairman of the Post Co., chose Harman over two other bidders because he promised to retain most of the staff. Graham is also said to be reassured by Harman's centrist politics, but that won't stop observers from raising questions about the newsweekly's editorial independence.

In a statement sent to the Weekly, Jane Harman promises not to meddle:

"Sidney was quoted recently as saying: 'I don't tell Jane how to vote

and she doesn't tell me how to run my business.' That's our rule and we

stick to it. Of course I am proud of his long and successful career

and believe that Newsweek and its enormously talented workforce will be

in good and caring hands," said Rep. Jane Harman (D-Venice).

That won't satisfy Harman's opponent in the November election, Republican Mattie Fein. Fein has penned an open letter to Graham questioning Harman's "troublesome history of interfering with a free press to advance a political agenda."

That's a reference to Harman's efforts in 2004 to urge the New York Times not to publish its scoop about the NSA's warrantless wiretapping program.

It's also fair to note that Sidney Harman is getting on in years, and absent some declaration otherwise, one assumes that control of the magazine would go to his wife upon his death. That gets us even closer to Silvio Berlusconi territory.

Related Content

Now Trending

  • Justin Bieber Takes Over Notorious L.A. Party House

    This party house has already been the target of neighbors' complaints, so we wonder how things will go with Justin Bieber reportedly renting the place. See also: Weidlake Party House Gets MTV Show Despite Neighbors' Complaints The Weidlake residence in the Hollywood Hills has been the site of parties, porn shoots...
  • BuzzFeed Aims at Latino Audience With L.A. Hires

    For decades, journalism groups have pressured news outlets to hire more minorities, particularly Latinos in Southern California. The idea, says the American Society of News Editors, "is to have the percentage of minorities working in newsrooms nationwide reflect the percentage of minorities in the nation's population by 2025."  The results...
  • L.A.'s 10 Most Pervasive Stereotypes: True or False?

    Has there ever been a more misunderstood American city than Los Angeles? Despite being the nation's second most populous metropolitan area, despite being the entertainment capital of the world, and despite having near-perfect weather 300 days out of the year, L.A. is routinely reduced to the most banal of stereotypes...
    5
Los Angeles Concert Tickets

Slideshows