The Press Has Never Been More Vital to the Survival of Democracy

Nicco Mele
Tuesday, October 16, 2018 - 6:00pm
Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy

29th Annual Theodore H. White Lecture on Press and Politics
Jill Abramson
Senior lecturer, Harvard University; political columnist, The Guardian; former executive editor, The New York Times
Jane Mayer
Staff Writer, The New Yorker; author, "Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right"
 
David Nyhan Prize for Political Journalism
David Von Drehle
Columnist, The Washington Post


After the David Nyhan Prize for Political Journalism was awarded to David Von Drehle, a columnist at The Washington Post, a conversation about the importance of press in democracy took place at the Forum. Jill Abramson, former Executive Editor at The New York Times, was joined by fellow journalist Jane Mayer, Staff Writer at The New Yorker, in an event moderated by Nicco Mele, Director of the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics, and Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School. In the wake of Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination and confirmation, Abramson and Mayer compared and contrasted this confirmation process to that of Justice Clarence Thomas—one they knew well having written the book Strange Justice: The Selling of Clarence Thomas back in the 90s. Overall, both women spoke about the importance of the press in relaying information to the people, in many ways operating as the fourth branch of the U.S. government.