Matt Cooper Heads Online

Word from Time Magazine today that Matthew Cooper, he of Valerie Plame and stand-up comedy fame, is leaving the White House beat (as was long expected) to become political editor of Time.com. Deputy ME Steve informed the staff today:

Online, he was an early adopter, writing analysis and humor for Slate starting way back in 1998 and since then contributing many prescient stories to Time.com. He joined the print magazine in 1999 as Deputy Washington Bureau Chief, after warming up for the post at the two other newsweeklies and writing the White House Watch column for The New Republic.

A man of many formats, Matt moonlights as a standup comedian–he was once named “Washington’s Funniest Celebrity”–and shares our ambition of making Time.com a multimedia experience. In his new gig, he will split his time between writing a regular column, assigning and editing stories, and helping to develop new political features for the 2006 elections and beyond.

Cooper’s departure from the White House beat has been widely expected since last summer’s addition of Mike Allen to the posting.