This is a banner week for The Nation, and for two of our most essential voices – Columnist Katha Pollitt and Editor at Large Chris Hayes. Both are in the news this week for milestones that reflect the best of The Nation: incisive commentary and thoughtful debate.
Last night was the debut of All In with Chris Hayes on MSNBC, Chris's new nightly program on MSNBC. From his early days writing at In these Times to his reporting for The Nation and his tireless work as our Washington, D.C. Editor from 2009-2011, Chris has always gone "all in” as a reporter. Up with Chris Hayes reflected some of the best in TV news, with Chris and his producing team accomplishing something that was no small feat: holding thoughtful, lively conversations about real issues in a way that was also engaging and fun to watch. Guests genuinely enjoy being on his show, and his work at MSNBC points the way to a new model for how cable news can inform debate.
Chris sparked some controversy last week in describing the lengths he goes to each week to ensure diversity among guests. Also worth noting, though, is the extent to which Chris brings new voices into the conversation. A typical Up panel was as likely to feature a grassroots organizer, a scholar or a Walmart worker as it was a political operative or a TV pundit. Chris has assured viewers that he will continue to focus on tough issues, from emerging labor struggles to poverty, even in the competitive 8PM nightly timeslot. We're rooting for him, and we’ll be following along at the show’s new hashtag, #inners.
We’re also excited to note that Columnist Katha Pollitt has been nominated for a 2013 National Magazine Award in “Columns and Commentary.” The NMA’s are like the Oscars of the magazine world, and Katha stands to take the prize as the industry’s best columnist.
2012 was a tremendous year for Katha as she weighed in on issues ranging from Ann Romney and the 2012 election to free speech and the continued scourge of “fetal personhood” laws. As I wrote in our nomination essay, Katha “illuminates the little-noticed implications of the critical issues facing the country—and the world—today.” Katha’s columns blend activism and commentary, with a provocative edge that calls readers to action. She will compete against past Nation contributor and fellow traveler Dahlia Lithwick of Slate, as well as the great Frank Rich, the New York Times Magazine’s Adam Davidson and Daphne Merkin of Elle.
The awards will be held May 2nd. This is Katha’s fifth nomination. She was nominated in essays and criticism in 1988, 1992 (winner) and 1995, and in columns and commentary in 2003, when she won her second “Ellie.” She’s like the Meryl Streep of magazine awards! Here are her three nominated columns:
March 26th: Protect Pregnant Women: Free Bei Bei Shuai
May 7th: Ann Romney, Working Woman?
October 15th: Blasphemy is Good for You
The Nation’s longtime designer and illustrator Milton Glaser will also be recognized for his lifetime achievements.
We congratulate both Chris and Katha on their accomplishments, and are proud they continue to grace our pages, our website and our masthead.
Watch select highlights from Monday night's first episode of All In with Chris Hayes.