Mediaite “rabblerouser” Tommy Christopher will soon be no more. At least at Mediaite. News of his parting ways with the media site broke Tuesday in The Mirror. Internally it was dubbed “a firing” although as was previously reported, Christopher was offered a way to stay and write in another capacity. In addition, editors praised him in a farewell memo posted on the site. He says he knows nothing of murmurings that editors weren’t pleased with his racial reporting and had scolded him about it. “Not that I can recall,” he told me. Thankfully I later had a chance to catch up with Tommy by phone. After all our fights and our relatively recent 24-hour horror fest by email, in which he accused me of all kinds of things I won’t dredge up now, we’ve agreed to officially make up and have coffee next time he’s in town. Hopefully that won’t end in bloodshed.
In the meantime, we spoke about his favorite and least favorite times at Mediaite.
First off, some gratitude. “I really am grateful to Dan Abrams,” Tommy said of Mediaite‘s founder, assuring me that he’d at least attempt to give me something different than he gave Politico‘s Dylan Byers. (I love it when people can vary their material.)
Asked about his favorite stories for Mediaite, he replied, “First thing I thought of is always the right answer: Covering the White House Correspondents’ Dinners was a blast. Covering the White House. Obviously the heart attack stands out. People were joking today about me losing my health insurance … it’s a validation of everything I do.” Why? “It sort of shows, I think it demonstrates that I always try to translate politics into policy and the personal. I’m a storyteller. People remove the humanity of it, especially online. These are all conservatives who are like ‘Oh, you have to apply for Obamacare.’ I have health insurance now. It will continue for the foreeable future.”
What’s next? “I’m not sure about that yet. I’ll probably take a little bit of time off.” On writing: “I’m sure I’ll be doing it somehow, somewhere. As far as Dan’s concerned, he’s always been really good to me and very flexible. Nothing but good things to say about Dan.”
What’s your least favorite memory at Mediaite? “My least favorite thing is that the last time I talked to Andrew Breitbart, I didn’t know it would be the last time. We were at CPAC. I think I was coming up off the escalator, he was coming down, we almost knocked each other over. I made a joke, ‘Watch it motherfucker.’ We laughed. His sudden death was one fo the saddest things that happened in the time I’ve been in this business. I wish we’d gotten that drink that we’d talked about, but it didn’t work out.”