MediaWatch: April 1989

Vol. Three No. 4

Revolving Door: New to U.S. News

New to U.S. News. Mortimer Zuckerman, owner of U.S. News & World Report, has successfully lured Michael Barone away from The Washington Post where he's been an editorial writer since 1982. Barone, co-author of the Almanac of American Politics, became a Senior Editor in early April.

From 1974 to 1981 he served as Vice President of Peter Hart Research Associates, a Democratic polling firm. Among the clients handled by Barone: Ted Kennedy's 1980 presidential effort.

From the Hart of Europe. Time's Robert Miller revealed the liberal background of one staffer in his March 27 "From the Publisher" column. Kenneth Banta, a Chicago and New York based Time reporter starting in 1981 "took a leave of absence in 1984 to work as an issues adviser for Gary Hart's first unsuccessful presidential campaign."

The partisan political foray was no hindrance to his career. Banta is now Time's Vienna-based Eastern European Bureau Chief.

Wiring the Hill. The Capitol Hill newspaper Roll Call reports two wire service veterans have switched from reading to writing press releases. Wendy Benjaminson, a political editor at UPI's national desk until she became a Capitol Hill reporter in December, is now the Press Secretary to U.S. Representative Barbara Kennelly, a Connecticut Democrat

Republican Lynn Martin of Illinois has hired David Fox, an Associated Press reporter in Washington the past two years, to be her Press Secretary. Fox held a variety of radio and TV positions in the Midwest before joining AP ten years ago.

Hazzardous Duty. Katherine Gibney, an editor and reporter for the Atlanta Journal and Atlanta Constitution since 1984 has joined the office of Congressman Ben Jones as Press Secretary. The freshman Democrat from Georgia gained fame by starring as "Cooter" in the Dukes of Hazzard TV series.

Nixonian Times. Los Angeles Times Publisher Tom Johnson, formerly an Executive Assistant and Deputy Press Secretary to President Johnson, has promoted another aide to a former President. In February Johnson made Lawrence Higby President of the Orange County edition of the Times. Higby, once a Deputy Assistant to Nixon, had been a Vice President in charge of marketing for Times Mirror Cable Television.