John Kampfner has been appointed political editor of the New Statesman following Jackie Ashley’s move to The Guardian in January. He starts on 6 June and will continue with his freelance commitments, particularly in broadcasting.
"I’ve been fortunate enough to have experience of all media and this appointment allows me to pursue both reported stories and columns," he said. Kampfner’s brief will include a fortnightly column plus longer "big-picture politics" pieces every week.
New Statesman editor Peter Wilby said Kampfner would provide the magazine with a narrative of "what’s really going on, or has gone on, in Westminster". "John’s great strength is in describing the smell of the corridors of Westminster and Whitehall," he added.
Wilby would not be drawn on other candidates for the post. However, Stephen Pollard, the former Daily Express columnist and leader writer, is understood to have been shortlisted.
Kampfner, a former political correspondent for BBC Radio 4’s Today programme and chief political correspondent of the FT, currently reports for BBC2’s Correspondent and writes for The Guardian, The Times and Daily Express.
By Wale Azeez