The Corner

Sid & Me

Sidney Blumenthal’s new book on the Clinton years is about to come out, reports the New York Times. He and I were once colleagues of a sort. My first job out of college was at The New Republic. Back then, TNR would hire a handful of recent grads and let them work in journalism for a year–it was an internship, basically, though many people who had it wound up staying on longer–and they always took one conservative to work with Fred Barnes. In 1992, that was me. It was a great experience, and one of the things that impressed me most about it was how people like Barnes, Mickey Kaus, Michael Kinsley, Michael Lewis, Andrew Sullivan, Jacob Weisberg kept their doors open and didn’t mind chatting with lackeys like me. Sid, though, was different. He was out of the office a lot. When he was around, he shut his door. I never had a chance to interact much with him . What I remember most was Election Day 1992, with Sid walking around the office passing out copies of the latest exit polls, apparently sent directly to him from Stanley Greenberg. He had a huge smile on his face all day long.

John J. Miller, the national correspondent for National Review and host of its Great Books podcast, is the director of the Dow Journalism Program at Hillsdale College. He is the author of A Gift of Freedom: How the John M. Olin Foundation Changed America.

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