Mark Halperin on the 'underperforming' American press and other journalism matters

The Bloomberg Politics managing editor recently spoke with Brian Koppelman on "The Moment" podcast. (Listen here: ) Some excerpts:
  1. "The people who know me best couldn't tell you what my politics are. The people who don't know me - if they're liberals, think I'm conservative; if they're conservative [they] think I'm liberal."
  2. "I am really idealistic. I'm mocked by my colleagues, and sometimes others, for being so trusting ... I'm very idealistic about people who are in public service and why they're doing it, and until they're led off in handcuffs I just assume they're in it for [doing] good."
  3. "I don't like the way things have gone for our media in general, and I feel at times like one of a few people trying to have things be more traditional the way they should be."
  4. [What do you mean by "traditional"? he's asked] "Journalists who put their own opinions - to the extent they have them - aside .... and listen to criticism of critics who say traditional news organizations are almost entirely liberally biased, and don't just dismiss that."
  5. "I can just tell you, I've worked in newsrooms my whole career; I can tell you, they're liberally biased - they don't know it, but they are."
  6. "The press is, I think, one of the most underperforming parts of our society. I think lawyers, doctors, car salesmen, NBA players - I think they all are excellent, and I think American journalism is nowhere near as excellent as it could be or should be in a lot of ways."
  7. "You look at the amount of coverage gaffes get, or Trump tweet [sic] gets - it is disgusting the extent to which trivial things crowd out important things because the press is interested in them."
  8. "I'm enjoying this [presidential campaign] less than people assume I am, because I find the fact that a lot of the country doesn't like the candidates, and most people I meet are voting against a candidate rather than for. I don't love that."
  9. "I didn't think Hillary Clinton would run because I think she'll have trouble, even if she wins, uniting the country, and I figured she'd figure that out."
  10. "I'd like to cover other things besides politics. I'm interested in other things, I'd like to see how I do, but it's just, once this became my brand - it's not so much that I'd be taking a risk to leave [the politics beat], but I don't think I'd be as well compensated or as sort of prominently influential right away on another story."
  11. "So I've just chosen to stick with - I've been dancing with the one that brung me, doing politics, and when I've tried with various employers to say, 'Hey, let me do other stuff,' they're reluctant to do it because my value to them is in the brand of politics."