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Paper Chase

The race is on to succeed Howell Raines at the Times. Our field guide to some likely (and not so likely) contenders.

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Bill Keller
Times columnist; Raines also-ran
The scoop: Well-respected former managing editor, Lelyveld’s man. Career full of the usual top-shelf worldly experience.
The dirt: Extremely uncuddly, and not buddies with Pinch Sulzberger.
The color: Dude, he’s for decriminalizing pot!
Odds: 3–1

Gail Collins
Times editorial-page editor
The scoop: Female, non-arrogant, friend of Pinch’s wife.
The dirt: No newsroom constituency, news heft, or fashion sense.
The color: Huge Survivor fan.
Odds: 20–1

Dean Baquet
Former Timesman, now L.A. Times managing editor
The scoop: Well-liked, well-regarded, and black.
The dirt: Heir presumptive in L.A., and unlikely to be let go easily.
The color: Could bring back N.Y. Timesers in exile in L.A.
Odds: 2–1

Marty Baron
Boston Globe editor
The scoop: Has run newsrooms (including the Times’, at night), won Pulitzers.
The dirt: Cold, distant, bearded. And would leave a hole at the Globe, a Times Co. property that works.
The color: Has an M.B.A.
Odds: 3–1

Walter Isaacson
President, Aspen Institute
The scoop: Reinvigorated Time with his showbiz news instincts and glad-handing.
The dirt: Connie Chung and his general failure at CNN.
The color: Joel Stein on the op-ed page?
Odds: 40–1

Andrew Rosenthal
Times assistant managing editor
The scoop: A member of Raines’s inner circle, he managed to disappear when things went south.
The dirt: A member of Raines’s inner circle.
The color: Is the Times really ready for Abe’s son?
Odds: 10–1

Jill Abramson
Times D.C.-bureau chief
The scoop: Stood up to Raines (her bureau might’ve performed the key coup de grâce on him when Sulzberger paid a visit).
The dirt: More likely for managing-editor slot.
The color: Would her Raines-backed arch-rival, Patrick Tyler, finally get the D.C. job?
Odds: 20–1

Tina Brown
Times of London columnist
The scoop: Gets Sulzberger’s high-low instincts.
The dirt: Might have budget issues.
The color: Tells us she’d put “Frank Rich back on the op-ed page.”
Odds: 200–1

Funny Cide
The scoop: Would bring a stable of writers. More communicative than Al Siegal.
The dirt: Cannot read or write.
The color: Huge (possibly only) fan of “Escapes” section.
Odds: Even


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