Howard Fineman is Newsweek's Senior Washington Correspondent and Columnist, senior editor and deputy Washington bureau chief. He is the author of "Living Politics," a column that began on MSNBC.COM and Newsweek.com and that now also appears in the print magazine. An award-winning reporter and writer, Fineman also is an analyst for NBC News and MSNBC, appearing regularly on "Countdown with Keith Olbermann," "Hardball with Chris Matthews" and "TODAY." The author of scores of Newsweek cover stories, Fineman's work has appeared as well in The New York Times, The Washington Post and The New Republic. His 2008 national best-selling book, "The Thirteen American Arguments," was released in paperback by Random House in the spring of 2009.
One of the nation's leading political reporters, Fineman has interviewed every major presidential candidate from (then-vice president) George H.W. Bush in 1985 to (then senator) Barack Obama early and often in the 2008 campaign cycle. His current work focuses on the Obama Administration and its top officials, as well as on Congress and politics throughout the country. Although based in Washington, Fineman travels widely in the U.S. and has covered politics and other events in 49 of the 50 states.
Fineman's work has produced many milestones and awards. A cover story in November 2001 featured President George W. Bush's first extensive interview after 9/11. Another cover, "Bush and God," was part of a series of articles that won the 2003 National Magazine Award for General Excellence. His reporting has helped Newsweek win many honors from the Magazine Publishers Association and the American Journalism Review. Other awards include a "Page One" from the Headliners Club of New York, a "Silver Gavel" from the American Bar Association and a "Deadline Club" from the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ). In 2006 he received the Alumni Award from Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism.
As a reporter and writer, Fineman ranges widely. Besides campaign-year covers, other projects have included: race and politics, the impact of digital technology on society, the influence of Hollywood on politics, the rise of the religious right and of conservative talk radio. He has interviewed business leaders such as George Soros, Bill Gates, Steve Case and Robert Rubin and entertainment figures such as Warren Beatty, Jane Fonda and Jay Leno.
Although now under exclusive television contract to NBC, Fineman over the years has appeared on major public affairs shows, such as Nightline, Face the Nation, Fox News Sunday, Larry King Live, Charlie Rose and the NewsHour. He was a regular panelist on Washington Week in Review on PBS (1983-95) and on CNN's Capital Gang Sunday (1995-98). He worked with Ted Koppel on Nightline specials, and has been a guest on Comedy Central's "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" and "The Colbert Report."
A native of Pittsburgh, Fineman began his career at The Courier-Journal in Louisville, covering the environment, the coal industry and state politics before joining the newspaper's Washington bureau in 1978. He moved to Newsweek in 1980, was named chief political correspondent in 1984, deputy Washington bureau chief in 1993, senior editor in 1995 and senior Washington correspondent and columnist in 2008.
Fineman holds an A.B., Phi Beta Kappa, from Colgate, an M.S. in journalism from Columbia and a J.D. from the Brandeis School of Law at the University of Louisville. His legal education included a year as a visiting student at the Georgetown University Law Center. He received Watson and Pultizer Traveling Fellowships for study in Europe, Russia and the Middle East, and has traveled to more than 40 countries, among them China, Vietnam, Japan, Ukraine, Israel, Turkey and the West Bank Palestinian Territories.
Fineman is married to Amy L. Nathan, a senior counsel at the Federal Communications Commission. They live in Washington with their two children, Meredith and Nicholas.