READ: Bloomberg Editor in Chief Addresses 2020 Coverage Plans in Staff Memo After Bloomberg Declares Run
Former Mayor Michael Bloomberg is in the 2020 race. Perhaps the most notable media angle of his announcement is, well, what Bloomberg News does now.
Bloomberg News editor-in-chief John Micklethwait addressed that issue in a note to staff, obtained by CNN, this morning.
“There is no point in trying to claim that covering this presidential campaign will be easy for a newsroom that has built up its reputation for independence in part by not writing about ourselves (and very rarely about our direct competitors). No previous presidential candidate has owned a journalistic organization of this size,” Micklethwait writes. “We have electoral laws to follow — to do with both balance and opinion. We will certainly obey them, but I think we need to do more than just that.”
One notable change is coming to Bloomberg Opinion:
“The place where Mike has had the most contact with Editorial is Bloomberg Opinion: our editorials have reflected his views. David Shipley, Tim O’Brien and some members of the Board responsible for those editorials will take a leave of absence to join Mike’s campaign. We will suspend the Board, so there will be no unsigned editorials. Our columnists, who produce the majority of Bloomberg Opinion’s content, will continue to speak for themselves, and we will continue to take some op-ed articles from outsiders (although not op-eds on the election).
Bloomberg News will continue normal campaign coverage, though they will “continue our tradition of not investigating Mike (and his family and foundation) and we will extend the same policy to his rivals in the Democratic primaries.”
Micklethwait does say that if other news outlets run investigative pieces on Bloomberg or others, they won’t “hide” them from readers.
Right now, he adds that they have reporters continuing to “investigate the Trump administration, as the government of the day.”
“If Mike is chosen as the Democratic presidential candidate (and Donald Trump emerges as the Republican one), we will reassess how we do that.”
Bloomberg Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait just sent this note to staffers: "There is no point in trying to claim that covering this presidential campaign will be easy for a newsroom that has built up its reputation for independence in part by not writing about ourselves…" pic.twitter.com/RvfvpsZgDV
— Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) November 24, 2019
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