How Networks’ Politics Sites Can Make Anyone “A Political Insider”

By Chris Ariens 

The Wall Street Journal’s Lee Gomes writes about how, in the 2008 campaign, “anyone with the right browser bookmarks can be a political insider.”

While all good reporters have their own sources, they also share the same daily reading list. Most start with the big national papers, though you can skip those and head right for a site like…”the Note” at and “First Read,” via MSNBC. is an obligatory stop by news junkies, and newsflashes are available at CNN’s Political Ticker.

By and large, they owe their existence to the Note, which began in the late 1990s as an in-house morning memo, used by ABC News to help plan the day’s coverage. It eventually gained a wide following, in large part because of the snarky wit of its first author, Mark Halperin, who now oversees “the Page” for