WaPo Drama Continues as New Editor Jumps Ship

After reports of unethical business practices, Robert Winnett will be staying at UK's Telegraph
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 21, 2024 9:00 AM CDT
WaPo Drama Continues as New Editor Jumps Ship
People walk by One Franklin Square, home to the Washington Post, in downtown Washington, DC, on Feb. 21, 2019.   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

The Washington Post leadership chaos just got a little more chaotic. The newspaper announced that its incoming editor, Robert Winnett, won't be coming on board after all, after multiple reports on his ties, and publisher Will Lewis' ties, to unethical information-gathering practices. "I'm pleased to report that Rob Winnett has decided to stay with us," Chris Evans, editor of the UK's Daily Telegraph, where Winnett is currently employed as its deputy editor, wrote in a memo to his staff. "As you all know, he's a talented chap and their loss is our gain."

Lewis offered his own statement "with regret" on the development. "We will immediately launch a new search for Editor of our core coverage," he wrote, noting that Matt Murray, the Post's executive editor and former editor of the Wall Street Journal, would hold down the fort "until after the US elections," and that Murray will also "carry forward planning and leading the third newsroom." That reference is to a "new, specialized newsroom" focused on social media and service journalism that Lewis wants to build up at the Post.

As for Winnett, Lewis notes, "Rob has my greatest respect and is an incredibly talented editor and journalist." The New York Times calls the latest news a "setback" for Lewis, who recruited Winnett, throwing Sally Buzbee, the paper's former executive editor, for a loop. Lewis had apparently promised Buzbee that she could take part in helping to pick her co-editor, then went and hired Winnett on his own, per the Times. Buzbee stepped down from her post in early June. (More Washington Post stories.)

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