The Note (ABC News)

The Note (ABC News)

The Note is a summary and analysis of political news stories and trends published every weekday morning by

Begun as an internal staff e-mail by then Political Director Mark Halperin, it was first published on January 14, 2002 and quickly became a must-read daily compendium of political news and analysis for the chattering classes. The Note is now edited by Senior Political Reporter Rick Klein.

"Washington Post" correspondent Dana Milbank told "The Washingtonian", "It's the arbiter of who is on the cutting edge." "The New York Times"' Adam Nagourney told the "New York Sun" The Note has a "certain intelligence to it," noting that "it’s often ahead of the news" and "sets out concepts for stories and ways to look at the world."

In 2006, The Note's online podcast counterpart, AfterNote was frequently hosted by ABC News field producer Teddy Davis.

In April 2007, Halperin left his post as editor of The Note. [ [ "Former Political Editor at ABC Moving to Time"] ""] He was replaced by Rick Klein, [ [ "Rick Klein Bio"] ""] who began writing a very different version of The Note starting on May 2nd, 2007.

Klein writes an original essay -- titled The NoteKlein, Rick [ "The Note"] ""] -- every weekday morning, analyzing and summarizing the major political storylines of the day, with links to the top political stories in newspapers and on Websites. In addition, an early-morning "Must-Reads" [ [ "Must-Reads"] ""] document is produced under The Note label, with links to stories in major newspapers. An afternoon preview of the next day's events, "The Note's Sneak Peek," [ [ "Sneak Peek"] ""] is authored by ABC News deputy political directors Teddy Davis and Karen Travers.

A weekly video version of The Note, featuring Klein and produced by Lindsey Ellerson, is posted online with an RSS Feed [ [ "Video Note RSS Feed"] ""] and distributed to ABC News affiliates for broadcast every Friday.


The Note has been criticized for alleged pro-Republican bias. Journalist Eric Boehlert writes that "it never crosses over into actually being edgy. In fact, The Note doesn't mock conventional wisdom so much as idolize it." and says it "is enamored of Republican Party talking points". []

The Note has also been criticized for alleged anti-Republican bias. In a memo dated October 8th, 2004, Mark Halperin instructed ABC employees that while both the Kerry campaign and the Bush campaign were guilty of distorting facts, they should be willing to say that distortions coming from the Bush campaign were worse when, in Halperin's estimation, they were. []

Another frequent criticism is that despite its blog-like style and the increasing poplarity of feed readers (especially in the political world), The Note does not publish its content via RSS (except for its podcast). offers a single RSS feed for all of its political content -- of which The Note is only one small part. This feed does not contain the full text of The Note, but instead only a headline and link.


The Note often employs jargon that may be incomprehensible to outsiders. Examples of this jargon include:

* The Gang of 500 refers to political insiders and journalists who influence the daily media narrative in US politics. About ten percent of the Gang of 500 is made up of political journalists. The term was coined by Mark Halperin as "campaign consultants, strategists, pollsters, pundits, and journalists who make up the modern-day political establishment". [ [ Annals of Politics: Inside Dope: The New Yorker ] ] They are "the 500 people whose decisions matter to the political news and campaign narrative we get from the major media". [ [ PressThink: Stark Message for the Legacy Media ] ]
* googling monkeys
* chattering classes
* "Big Casino" refers to the federal budget and uncertainty around revenue and spending caused by changes in the economy, war and other unpredictable circumstances that will effect the ability of politicians to change taxes or spending.


External links

* [ Official website]

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