Politico in Turmoil, Losing Editors and Staff

susan glasser

Politico’s new editor, Susan Glasser, brings a management style that results in a steady stream of editors and writers headed for the door, a report says.

Glasser took the helm of the popular Internet-based news portal’s print magazine in 2013. She was once the editor-in-chief of Foreign Policy Magazine. This year she was promoted to Politico’s editor, a role that gave her “full authority” over both the print and Internet editions.

But as soon as she took control, according to an insider, Glasser began to “change the DNA” of the organization, causing many high-ranking editors and prominent writers to feel disrespected.

Glasser set the stage with an article in Politico Magazine in May that cast all criticism of her management style as “sexism.” In “Editing While Female,” Glasser complained that any woman who has tried to lead a news agency has been held back by sexist mistreatment — including herself, of course.

One unnamed insider claimed that Glasser is easily vexed and sees all opposition as sexism. She “definitely sees everything through gender glasses,” the insider said.

In an extensive article in the Free Beacon, Glasser is portrayed by a series of staffers as difficult to work with and for.

Staffers feel that she has gone out of her way to marginalize writers and editors, in an effort to get many to quit so that she can fill their jobs with her handpicked applicants.

But the worst criticism seems to be that she is destroying what made the Politico website the go-to website for inside baseball political news.

Politico used to be a place that flooded the zone, advanced the ball incrementally,” one former staffer told the Free Beacon. “It was a place where you could get a scooplet or a quick hit on the website in an hour, and lots of people liked working for a publication like that. It seems she’s changing the DNA of the place.”

Since Glasser became the organization’s top boss, over 40 editors, writers, and staffers have quit.

In December, three top editors quit — including deputy managing editor Laura McGann, White House editor Dan Berman, and deputy managing editor Gregg Birnbaum.

In an attempt to explain why so many loyal staffers have abandoned her outlet, Glasser scoffed that Politico is merely going through a “period of growth and rising ambition.”

Glasser’s blasé explanation seems problematic, in light of the shockingly high number of defections from Politico’s newsroom. As The Washington Post’s Erik Wemple recently noted, the turnover rate of jobs in the newspaper industry is about eight percent. By In comparison, just in the last year alone, Politico’s turnover rate has been a whopping 25 percent.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter: @warnerthuston. Email the author at igcolonel@hotmail.com.


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