Staff members of The Weekly Standard, the conservative magazine that has been critical of President Donald Trump, expect to see a shut-down after rumors about the magazine’s fate began to circulate.
On Tuesday, CNN published an article expressing uncertainty about the magazine’s future.
MediaDC, the magazine’s publisher, seems to favor its other conservative news organization, The Washington Examiner, which tends to be more positive toward Trump.
“They’re expanding the pro-Trump magazine that does what the owners want, while threatening closing of an independent magazine that has its own history and identity,” an unnamed source told CNN.
The Weekly Standard was founded by Bill Kristol, an anti-Trump neoconservative who currently serves as the magazine’s editor-at-large.
Kristol has been a vocal opponent of Trump since the beginning of Trump’s presidential run. He was also one of the major influencers behind the failed #NeverTrump movement.
Here’s how the magazine depicted the then-Republican candidate’s campaign back in January of 2016. (Note Kristol’s commentary.)
— Bill Kristol (@BillKristol) January 23, 2016
Even when Trump does something conservatives would normally favor, like lowering taxes, Kristol manages to find a negative spin.
In a series of phone calls Tuesday, the magazine’s editor-in-chief, Stephen Hayes, told staff that the fate of the magazine is uncertain.
One staff member from The Weekly Standard told The Daily Caller that Hayes himself was left in the dark about the magazine’s future.
CNN reported that its sources had said MediaDC Chairman Ryan McKibben had asked to meet with Hayes late next week. McKibben wants the entire staff of The Weekly Standard be available after that meeting, CNN reported.
“Supposedly Steve Hayes doesn’t even know,” the staff member told The Daily Caller.
An editor for the magazine told The Daily Caller that employees expect the magazine to shut down before 2019.
EXCLUSIVE: The Weekly Standard will be closing, according to several employees and individuals close to the magazine. One editor there tells me they do not even have a budget for 2019.
— Joe Gabriel Simonson (@SaysSimonson) December 4, 2018
“I don’t expect it to exist after Dec. 14, 2018,” the editor said. “There is no budget for it at all.”
A former employee of The Washington Examiner offered another prediction.
“They’re either closing or they’re folding into a page of the Washington Examiner,” the former Examiner employee said.
However, a current editor at The Weekly Standard was more pessimistic.
“I don’t think ‘folded’ is the right word. It sounds more like get rid of us entirely,” the editor said.
It makes sense that the magazine couldn’t stay afloat with its anti-Trump spin while Trump remains popular among conservatives.
That’s too bad. I even had a few pieces published therein. But Bill’s shrill NeverTrumpism just was not a winning strategy.
— The Occidental Jihadist (@Occidentaljihad) December 4, 2018
Well when you’re supposed to be conservative but are so anti-Trump that you make a case for Hillary no wonder 🤦🏼♀️
— Janet Zauner (@Jmz1983) December 5, 2018
Of course. Once they decided that they were “too good” to honor and respect the candidate we chose and president we elected they were doomed.
— Karen Colasinski (@kjoycolasin) December 5, 2018
Given the state of the media market these days, there are plenty of reasons a publication could fold. But Kristol’s anti-Trump agenda certainly didn’t help.
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