In an interview with TNR‘s Isaac Chatiner published Tuesday, Politico co-founders John Harris and Jim VandeHei took swipes at Nate Silver, the number-crunching NY Times journalist who correctly predicted all 50 states’ outcome in the 2012 presidential election.
VandedHei said he didn’t have time to read his election coverage, but while he admires the brand Silver’s been able to build, he “roll[s] his eyes at how he gets up on his high horse quite a lot.” Harris accused Silver of “trying to use numbers to prove stuff” that Harris doesn’t think can be proved by numbers (he didn’t offer examples). He also said he was aware that Silver is a “Politico hater,” though, he, too admires him.
Silver shot back in an email Tuesday to TPM’s Tom Kludt that started off by saying he “thought it was a good interview.” After that, Silver goes on to rail on the Politico co-founders, accusing the publication of being short of perspective and operating “within a post-truth worldview.” The email continued, bashing the publication and its co-founders.
Andrew Sullivan joined Silver in insulting VandeHarris today on his blog by citing the email and offering his own criticisms of Politico, saying that “there’s no perspective, very little history, precious little policy and no perceivable goal except financial success.” He says he greatly enjoys reading some Politico writers and pointedly mentions Ben Smith, a former Politico blogger who, of course, now runs BuzzFeed.
We reached out to Politico for comment.