Hearne: New Star Editorial Writer Works K.C. Schmooze After D.C. Axe

Talk about controversial couples…

Seems the newest Kansas City Star addition comes with a bit of journalistic baggage.

Editorial columnist Melinda Henneberger’s been all over the map since splashing down at 18th and Grand recently. She’s weighed in on everything from FBI honcho James Comey to Mother’s Day to fake news to stuff she likes about KC.

You know, the kind of stuff of vital interest to locals.

Not surprisingly, the things Henneberger likes about the Cowtown range from less traffic to freebie concert tix to Star sponsored shows and Midwestern greetings.

And while that’s all fine and good, it may also be of interest – to Star staffers anyway –  that Henneberger did not come to 18th and Grand controversy free.

Far from it.

According to Politico Henneberger was ousted late last summer from her position as editor of Washington D.C. political watchdog Roll Call after less than a year on the job.

Henneberger tried to spin her sudden departure as a “disagreement with leadership over staff cuts.”

However according to Politico, Henneberger’s “tenure was fraught with staff departure and turnover.”

There’s more.

“There are a lot of problems at CQ Roll Call,” said another source with knowledge of Henneberger’s tenure,” Politico adds. “While many started before Melinda came on, her vision for Roll Call only exacerbated the issues. Traffic on the site fell significantly on her watch, which only led to an even greater emphasis on clicks and less emphasis on Roll Call’s traditional focus of Capitol Hill. In the end, the newsroom was left with a paper without a vision or mission.”

On top of which, “Another source familiar with her tenure said Henneberger was ‘disengaged’ and ‘constantly absent,’” Politico added.

Good thing Henneberger had pals in KC and was able to work a schmooze with new Star editorial head Colleen McCain Nelson.

Yet while friendship may have saved Henneberger’s journalistic bacon and helped her to land the gig here, it was apparently a contributor to her downfall in Washington, D.C.

“She did herself no favors by letting so many well-known names go and replacing them with her friends,” a Politico source adds. “But her worst failure — one that upper management shares responsibility for — was her lack of vision or a plan.”

Henneberger’s journey from the Washington Post to Politico to the lowly Cowtown apparently will bring another WaPo washout, husband/blogger Bill Turque. 

Although Turque’s Linked In page still shows him as a D.C. reporter “covering government and politics in Montgomery County, Maryland” – and he has blog bylines as recently as May 8 – he’s no longer reachable at the WaPo, according to an operator at the newspaper.

Turque’s most memorable journalistic moment went down in 2010 via a Washington City Paper headline that read:

“Washington Post Editorial Board Livid Over Turque Blog Post”

“The Washington Post editorial board is pissed beyond words about Bill Turque’s Wednesday blog post regarding the board’s relationship with D.C. public schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee. In the post, which the paper temporarily deleted from its site last night, Metro education reporter Turque blasted editorial writer Jo-Ann Armao for furnishing Rhee a ‘print version of the Larry King Show.”

When reached today for reaction on Turque’s strong words, Armao said, “I am not talking about it in any way, shape, or form,” noting that she’s not even gossiping with friends who’ve approached her on the matter. When asked why she’s going covert on this one, Armao said she was busy with a bunch of other things. I said, “Aw, come on,” and then pointed out that the journalistic thing to do is to open up.

Armao then apologized in advance for hanging up. Dial tone.”

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12 Responses to Hearne: New Star Editorial Writer Works K.C. Schmooze After D.C. Axe

  1. Steve Bilko says:

    SPITR syndrome (smartest people in the room) combined with laser interest in “SPITR” friends club… = pretentious, down the nose journalism… not a good formula to peruse for a newspaper trying to survive.

  2. old news again hearne. Where ya been dude? Topeka? Do they not have a paper or did Spectrum shut down your internet.
    We’re seeing the “dead tree media” at it’s best. Incredible reporting on trumps lying
    stealing and cheating the nation. The rats are jumping off the ship. Most recent…Priebus.
    Better hurry if you’re sick and need a doctor or operation. Dumpster stopped paying the insurance companies and they’re gonna cut us all off!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Did your boy ever get a job?

    • admin says:

      I guess someone of your intellectual calibre, boom boom, would see the value in paying local publications to regurgitate national news and import failed “journalists” from out of town to weigh in on things they have next to no knowledge of, experience with or connection to.

      Makes perfect sense!

      • your writers have no knowledge of sports….the german has
        picked the worst movies ever….your buddy wislon got stuck
        in a suv spying on a large suv with large antennas that looked like a ufo….he drives to lawrence to get old filthy shoes fixed…his
        story on the kid was all screwed up….glazer knows nothing about
        hollywood and is waiting til the world ends for his dust bin book to become a movie….glazer has been wrong on almost every sports event…especially the biggest super bowls….glazzer has no connection with the big stars of comedy except he and maybe 200 club owners paid these current stars to perform on their stage and never “discovered” a single one…..I don’t pay for the star…you’re an idiot if you do….tony’s has better coverage than the star on local events…..DO YOU PAY FOR THE STAR?
        National news is now 24/7 and if i need national news there’s 100 sites that report it within minutes of it happening. If trump says anything stupid..i don’twait to read it in the star..i just go to msnbc or cnn or even fox news now…..fox networks anchors were nothing but molesters (Have any star reporters been sued for sexual harrassment?)….fox news lies just like trump (give us some examples where the star lied ass much as trump has in his first 3 months…..Hannity has a rap sheet….shep is gay….
        I guess all the fox anchors (the male ones) can do a great report on sexual harrassment…..I don’t buy the star…..you do cause without the star you’d have no stories on your site Seriously Hearne…you can’t compete with boom boom. Put down your pen and become a ticket taker at stanfords.
        or you can join your boy Wilson on the unemployment line with all the other old unemployed dudes.
        Lucky you had a trust fund. Your resume would be a joke…
        “I MANAGED THE PITCH”…”i wrote a gossip column”…
        I sell cars….good luck finding a job goober with your buddy.

  3. at least this lady has a good job…

  4. thank god for the dead tree media like post and times.
    without them wed never know what a lying crook piece of crap our president and his cronies were.
    They saved america!

    • admin says:

      You’re so one dimensional, Boomy…

      It must be really boring waking up every day and thinking the same tired thoughts over and over and over again

      • John Altevogt says:

        Could this be the return of Harley? At least it’s pithier than Harley.

        • admin says:

          Be careful what you (kinda, sorta) wish for, John!

          • John Altevogt says:

            Nah, I never read anything Harley wrote and as long as you’re moderating the site, I’d lose trolls like this one. Discussion is one thing, but people like this just drag everything down.

        • paulwilsonkc says:

          Of course it’s Harley, John.
          His only recourse is to insult people with no basis of fact. And if he could see my billings this month, he’d drop the unemployed box salesman BS. I’ve made 5 times what he has this month alone and I don’t CARE what his income is. I’ll still be right.
          You can claim anything you want when you’re an anonymous coward.
          Wanna meet at Craig’s and compare, Harley? I’m ready… you’ll be as wrong as you have been all the other times.
          Put up or shut up, little man.

  5. Next time use a longer picture of her so that I can see if she has any assets.

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