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John Nichols

National Affairs Correspondent

John Nichols, a pioneering political blogger, writes about politics for The Nation magazine as its national affairs correspondent. His posts have been circulated internationally, quoted in numerous books, and mentioned in debates on the floor of Congress.

Nichols is a contributing writer for The Progressive and In These Times and the associate editor of the Capital Times, the daily newspaper in Madison, Wisconsin. His articles have appeared in the New York Times, Chicago Tribune and dozens of other newspapers.

Nichols is a frequent guest on radio and television programs as a commentator on politics and media issues. He was featured in Robert Greenwald’s documentary, “Outfoxed,” and in the documentaries Joan Sekler’s “Unprecedented,” Matt Kohn’s “Call It Democracy” and Robert Pappas’s “Orwell Rolls in his Grave.” The keynote speaker at the 2004 Congress of the International Federation of Journalists in Athens, Nichols has been a featured presenter at conventions, conferences and public forums on media issues sponsored by the Federal Communications Commission, the Congressional Progressive Caucus, Consumers International, the Future of Music Coalition, the AFL-CIO, the Rainbow/PUSH Coalition, the Newspaper Guild [CWA] and dozens of other organizations.

Nichols is the author of The Genius of Impeachment (The New Press); a critically acclaimed analysis of the Florida recount fight of 2000, Jews for Buchanan (The New Press); and a best-selling biography of Vice President Dick Cheney, Dick: The Man Who is President (The New Press), which has recently been published in French and Arabic. He edited Against the Beast: A Documentary History of American Opposition to Empire (Nation Books), of which historian Howard Zinn said: “At exactly the time when we need it most, John Nichols gives us a special gift–a collection of writings, speeches, poems, and songs from throughout American history–that reminds us that our revulsion to war and empire has a long and noble tradition in this country.”

With Robert W. McChesney, Nichols has co-authored the books It’s the Media, Stupid! (Seven Stories), Our Media, Not Theirs (Seven Stories), Tragedy and Farce: How the American Media Sell Wars, Spin Elections, and Destroy Democracy (The New Press), The Death and Life of American Journalism (Nation Books), Uprising: How Wisconsin Renewed the Politics of Protest, from Madison to Wall Street (Nation Books), and their latest, People Get Ready: The Fight Against a Jobless Economy and a Citizenless Democracy (Nation Books, March 2016). McChesney and Nichols are the co-founders of Free Press, the nation’s media-reform network, which organized the 2003 and 2005 National Conferences on Media Reform.

Of Nichols, author Gore Vidal says: “Of all the giant slayers now afoot in the great American desert, John Nichols’s sword is the sharpest.” (Photo by Robin Holland / Bill Moyers Journal)


  • January 15, 2005

    MLK’s moral values

    The anniversary of the birth of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. falls just five days before the second inauguration of a president who has broken faith with most of the civil rights leader's legacy -- at home and abroad.

    But, while today's leaders are out of touch with King's legacy, Americans who still hold out hope that their country might truly embrace a higher and better morality than that of George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and Condoleezza Rice must keep in touch.

    Amid our celebrations of King's monumental contribution to the struggle for racial and economic justice in the United States, we must also celebrate his commitment to peace – and to the humane foreign policies that ultimately provide the best defense against threats and violence.

    John Nichols

  • Media January 13, 2005

    Big-League Radio

    George Bush had best be careful when he fiddles with the radio dial in the presidential limousine on Inauguration Day.

    John Nichols

  • Economic Policy January 13, 2005

    A Fight We Can Win

    The results of the last election of 2004 could foretell the first serious defeat for the Bush Administration's agenda in the new Congress.

    John Nichols

  • Political Figures January 12, 2005

    Dr. Dean Calling

    Howard Dean elbowed his way into the 2005 contest for the chairmanship of the Democratic National Committee with the same unbridled energy, litany of ideas big and small and outsized self-confide

    John Nichols

  • January 10, 2005

    An Election Reform Movement

    David Cobb, the Green Party presidential candidate who has devoted the past two months to the arduous task of pressing for a full review of the mess that Ohio officials made of the election in that state, called on Friday afternoon to proclaim a sort of victory. "I think we've finally got a movement going for election reform in this country," Cobb said.

    To an extent, he's right.

    At the grassroots level, there appears to be growing support for a count-every-vote, eliminate-every-opportunity-for-fraud standard that would radically alter the way in which the United States runs elections.

    John Nichols

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  • January 6, 2005

  • Campaigns and Elections January 6, 2005

    An Appropriate Objection

    American elections never play out perfectly.

    John Nichols



  • December 30, 2004

    Bush Fails a Global Test

    George Bush ended 2004 on a sour note.

    But at least he maintained his record as the most disingenuous president since Richard Nixon.

    When other world leaders rushed to respond to the crisis caused by last Sunday's tsunamis in southern Asia, George Bush decamped to his ranch in Texas for another vacation. For three days after the disaster, the only formal response from the White House was issued by a deputy press secretary. Finally, after a United Nations official made comments that seemed to highlight the disengaged nature of the official U.S. reaction to one of the worst catastrophes in human history, the president appeared at a hastily-scheduled press conference to grumble about how critics of his embarrassing performance were "misguided and ill-informed."

    John Nichols