Andrew Sullivan, An ‘Early Supporter Of’ Obama, Says He’s Out At NY Mag Because Coworkers Think He’s Too ‘Conservative’

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Shelby Talcott Senior White House Correspondent
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Andrew Sullivan believes he is out at New York Magazine because his coworkers see his “conservative” views as “physically” harmful to them, he wrote Friday.

Sullivan announced Tuesday that he was parting ways with NY Mag, which was acquired by Vox Media. Sullivan elaborated about the move in a NY Mag column Friday and noted that “the quality of” his work isn’t the problem, rather his beliefs are.

“What has happened, I think, is relatively simple: A critical mass of the staff and management at New York Magazine and Vox Media no longer want to associate with me, and, in a time of ever tightening budgets, I’m a luxury item they don’t want to afford,” Sullivan wrote.

“And that’s entirely their prerogative. They seem to believe, and this is increasingly the orthodoxy in mainstream media, that any writer not actively committed to critical theory in questions of race, gender, sexual orientation, and gender identity is actively, physically harming co-workers merely by existing in the same virtual space. Actually attacking, and even mocking, critical theory’s ideas and methods, as I have done continually in this space, is therefore out of sync with the values of Vox Media.”

Sullivan noted that he has “passionately opposed Donald J. Trump,” “pioneered marriage equality,” supports “legalized drugs, criminal-justice reform, more redistribution of wealth” and a slew of other traditionally liberal viewpoints. He added that he “was a major and early supporter of Barack Obama” and intends “to vote for Biden in November.”

Despite these facts, Sullivan wrote that his views apparently do not match up with Vox Media and NY Mag. (RELATED: Andrew Sullivan: Keys to conservatism’s revival improving Obamacare, accepting climate change)

“It seems to me that if this conservatism is so foul that many of my peers are embarrassed to be working at the same magazine, then I have no idea what version of conservatism could ever be tolerated,” Sullivan’s Friday column reads. “And that’s fine. We have freedom of association in this country, and if the mainstream media want to cut ties with even moderate anti-Trump conservatives, because they won’t bend the knee to critical theory’s version of reality, that’s their prerogative.”

“It may even win them more readers, at least temporarily. But this is less of a systemic problem than in the past, because the web has massively eroded the power of gatekeepers to suppress and control speech. I was among the first to recognize this potential for individual freedom of speech, and helped pioneer individual online media, specifically blogging, 20 years ago.”

NY Mag’s editor in chief David Haskell issued a statement Tuesday about Sullivan’s departure. He hinted at the difficulty of “publishing conservative commentary” and noted that the magazine is “a place where the liberal project is hashed out,” Mediaite reported.

Publishing conservative commentary, or critiques of liberalism and the left, in 2020 is difficult to get right, and thoughtful, well-meaning people can come to different conclusions about it,” Haskell said.

Sullivan announced that he would bring back his old blog now that he has cut ties with NY Mag.