National Journal Group announced today that Matthew Cooper has been named Editor of National Journal Daily. Cooper will oversee a “ramping up” of Daily resources. This means more reporters and editors focused on congressional coverage and a new column from congressional correspondent Major Garrett.
Newsroom shifts are likely as resources are added and reapportioned to the Daily. These would primarily involve moves and promotions within the newsroom, as well as new hires, but could ultimately lead to departures.
Cooper joined the publication in 2010 as Managing Editor of White House coverage.
Industry sources are framing what is happening at NJ a little differently. First of all, more than one source referred to it as a “shakeup” not a “ramp up.” Secondly, we hear that some NJ reporters are exploring job possibilities at other publications, but nothing out of the ordinary for the usual incestuousness amongst Washington publications. Thirdly, we hear reports that the pace of the work isn’t what management would like it to be, there are frustrations and they’ll be “putting a boot in the ass of those who are working at magazine pace.”
Publicist Taylor West said the changes were happening to keep the publication on a competitive track. She said, “It’s born from a desire to keep adding to the momentum of the relaunch and to understand that a competitive market means we always have to keep evolving and improving. We made some huge strides with the relaunch, and we learned a ton, and now we want to focus in with even more resources and an even sharper approach on the Daily specifically.”
West said she hadn’t heard any concerns about pace. But rather this is “a motivation to make sure we’re always tuned in to the needs of our subscribers and making a product that meets those in the sharpest way possible. Also, a lot of excitement to have Matt bringing some fresh eyes and a lot of experienced insight to that.”
As for NJ reporters interviewing at other publications, she remarked, “I don’t know anything about specific reporters, but there’s always some natural amount of moving around within the D.C. press corps.”
In a release, Editor-in-Chief Ron Fournier of course had high praise for Cooper: “The Daily’s mission is to arm Washington leaders every day with precisely what they need to know about Congress to succeed, whenever, wherever, and however they need it. Under Matt’s leadership, we’ll be able to hone in on that mission with even more energy and precision than we ever have.”