We are proud to report that The New Republic has been awarded "Best Political Coverage" in Utne Reader's 2009 Independent Press Awards.
Here is Utne's statement announcing TNR's award:
"An ability to explain complex ideas in plainspoken English"; "an evenness of temper"; "a sincere liberal but without the temperament of an ideologue." That's how the New Republic characterized candidate Barack Obama in 2008. The magazine might as well have been describing its own remarkable attributes.
More than any other political periodical in 2008, the New Republic popped up during Utne Reader staff huddles, on its websites, and, inevitably, during heated arguments in the hall. The 95-year-old magazine's opening section, The Mall-a spot most publications fill with half-baked snark and quick-hit analysis-was a prescient tip sheet for political junkies during the primary season and leading up to the general election. The correspondents were looking at the same mess as their peers, but they always seemed to dig a bit deeper and see a bit farther. The results included lucid columns on electoral politics colliding with religion, Israel lobbyists, and the cult of personality that surrounded the magazine's preferred presidential candidate.
As important as the New Republic was to the horse race coverage, it was never lost in it. Features on the jihadist revolt against Osama bin Laden and the reinvention of the American city plus a steady beat of books and arts coverage kept the magazine and its readers engaged with the world beyond election-year politics. At a time of dizzying crises and global transformation, an intrepid companion like the New Republic is no small comfort.