City Desk

Rhee Ex Is ‘America’s Next Great Pundit’

The Washington Post editorial page is quite smitten with schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee, that we know.

Turns out they like her ex-husband, too!

Kevin Huffman, an executive for Teach for America who split up with Rhee in 2007, has been named "America's Next Great Pundit" and will be handed valuable WaPo op-ed real estate for at least three months.

Huffman, according to a press release, "survived five rounds of punditry challenges, including writing a traditional op-ed column, blogging on tight deadlines on a range of topics, fielding difficult questions from readers and presenting confidence on video, all of which were subjected to criticism from Post personalities and reader comments and voting."

WaPo editorial page editor Fred Hiatt writes to Huffman: "A good columnist has to both have something original and useful to say, and give readers a sense of his or her personality. You did both, coming across as someone who is smart, incisive and — this was the key — funny without being mean-spirited."

UPDATE, 3:05 P.M.: Hiatt responds to Politico's Michael Calderone:

Hiatt, the Post's editorial page editor, pointed out to POLITICO that Huffman was voted in by viewers and readers across the country. "I don't think his personal life was a factor." Hiatt, himself, said he didn't know Huffman before the contest and doesn't know of anyone at the Post who did.

And would Huffman have to disclose that he was married to Rhee?

"As with any columnist, we would expect him not to write about areas in which he has a personal conflict, or to disclose the conflict if he chooses to write about such areas," Hiatt said.

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  • Ward 5

    I really hate WaPo... the other day some school age (college) kid came to my door offering to give me a "free" WaPo newspaper, then asked if I would consider subscribing as some of it would help him with school expenses. Now, I love the kids, however I dislike the post even more - so I declined.

    He took back the newspaper lol

    Again, I hate WaPo!

  • Korrupt

    What is it about these people that endears them to the WaPo? They must be getting support from someone(s) on high.

  • Wrong Number

    Any news entity that has Sally "Every High School Had One" Quinn writing about "faith" can't have much real editorial value. Yesterday she penned a tome on being "generous" not a word one ever finds associated with Quinn.

    The whole Post enterprise has fallen to this dysfunctional High School level since Katherine Weymought became publisher and has allowed the influence of a cabal of harpies to trump all. The problem is not so much the people she has let go but the low caliber of those she has kept. Doubtful if Weymouth doesn't correct this mistake that she and the Post will mudddle through.

  • W

    Rhee's ex must be doing Ben Bradlee!

  • Sara

    And, duh, the pundit is a middle-aged white male. But they let women and people of color try out so, you know, no problems there.

  • CorruptDC
  • BarryLo

    Looks like the Post is in panic mode. They shut down the comments section on the contest pages.

  • Ward 5

    Thanks CorruptDC for the links ;-)

  • Lea

    So they stuffed the ballot box so he could win!

    The POST is far away from the integrity that made them a re known name. AS paper's are dying in favor of online or broadcast---the leg up papers have is it is the real deal.

    I just enjoy watching them dig their own grave.

  • Pingback: Ben Giles » Blog Archive » And the winner is…

  • Five to Go

    Yeah, Lea they did stuff the ballot box to let Rhee's ex-husband win. Why does it seem that some people The Washington Post-Adrian Fenty--and DC teacher haters try their best to paint such a pretty picture of Michelle Rhee? Ms. Rhee needs to be fired, jailed, and sent to "Cali" to be with her child-molester boyfriend Kevin Johnson. Bring on the September 2010 Primaries.

  • AA

    The contest was a sham from beginning to end. City Paper needs to investigate this scandal further.

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