Jonathan Alter

Jonathan Alter graduated from Harvard in 1979, was an editor of the Washington Monthly from 1981 to 1982, and remains a contributing editor. He joined Newsweek in 1983, where he was a senior editor and columnist for 28 years. He joined NBC News as a contributing correspondent in 1996 and appears frequently on the “Today” show, NBC Nightly News, and MSNBC. He is the author of two bestselling books: The Defining Moment: FDR’s Hundred Days and the Triumph of Hope, and The Promise: President Obama, Year One. He is married, has three children, and lives in Montclair, New Jersey.


Tea Party and Teachers’ Union Make Strange Brew

The age-old tension between federal authority and states’ rights is back in a big way in this year’s presidential campaign, with Republican candidates taking the let-the-states-handle-it position on everything from environmental regulation to health-care reform. Now President Barack Obama’s education policy, a rare bipartisan winner, may also be headed back to the states, which were… Read more »

Hillary Clinton Over Biden for VP? Possible

When does “no” not really mean no? When politicians say it. Reporters understand that if the circumstances are right, the answer can always change. On Thursday, NBC News’s Savannah Guthrie asked Secretary of State Hillary Clinton about the rumor du jour, that President Barack Obama might ask Clinton to swap jobs with Vice President Joe… Read more »

Occupy Wall Street Should Scare Republicans

In Florida this week, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney was asked about the growing Occupy Wall Street movement. “I think it’s dangerous, this class warfare,” he said. Romney’s right. It may be dangerous — to his chances of being elected. Occupy Wall Street, now almost three weeks old, isn’t like the anti-globalization demonstrations that disrupted… Read more »

Worried About America? Visit a Boys & Girls Club

The political world is so toxic that I needed some relief, so I tuned into a reality show more real than anything on television. I wasn’t disappointed. The stories I heard were at once harrowing and inspirational. And they were deeply connected to the future of the country. This week, I served as one of… Read more »

Batting .000 for the 00’s, America’s Lost Decade

Have you ever seen “The Apotheosis of George Washington”? It’s a fresco painted on the ceiling of the Rotunda of the U.S. Capitol, at the very center of the American republic. It was painted by Constantino Brumidi in 1865, when the Capitol was being completed at the end of the Civil War. I was reminded… Read more »