VandeHei Responds

Jim VandeHei sends us this note, which he also sent to Romenesko in response to some of the things being said about the VandeHarris venture:

    In response to Trevor Butterworth:

    I would like to echo David Von Drehle’s recent letter about Len Downie and the future of the Washington Post. Our decision to leave the post absolutely did not represent a “failure of management and leadership” at the post. In fact, Len, Don Graham and the rest of Post family did more than John and I ever expected in an effort to keep us at the Post. Don and Len are two of the true class acts in journalism today, not only professionally but on a very personal level. It was an honor to work for both men, and a very difficult decision to leave. Our reason for leaving is simple: John and I were presented with a rare and irresistible opportunity to start a new multiplatform political publication from scratch.

    As for Len, I dare anyone to find more honorable, straight-shooting and innovative leader in journalism today.

    I would also like to briefly address Michael Sokolove’s letter. I should chose my words more carefully. Our goal is to be as good, and one day better, than the Washington Post and New York Times when it comes to covering two things: presidential politics and Congress. We will begin at a severe disadvantage: both papers have larger staffs and powerful brand names. We will be the underdog. But with smart hires John and I are confidant our team can compete at the highest levels of political journalism. Why else would we leave the paper with the best political coverage in the country? Happy Thanksgiving.