Obama Alums Start Anti-Trump, Millennial-Focused ‘Crooked Media’ Site

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By Emily Zanotti | 1:24 pm, January 9, 2017

Jobs are scarce for Obama and Clinton loyalists seeking new employment in Washington. Four thousand White House workers will be trying to find a place to call home come January 20th, and having made few gains in the 2016 elections, there just aren’t enough Democratic slots to go around.

Two former Obama staffers are trying to buck the trend by launching a new website called “Crooked Media,” focused on “educating” Millennial voters about the Donald Trump administration.

They believe a site whose sole focus is reinterpreting the Democratic message without the interference of media is sorely needed because Trump is adept at using Twitter and friendly sources to drown out “more important” stories (even as Trump supporters often make the opposing argument).

“I think the lesson for us is that if you’re solely filtering your message through the media, you’ve already lost,” Crooked Media founder and former Obama speechwriter Tommy Vietor told Time magazine. “He has Breitbart and Twitter and he’ll just swamp you. We need to do a better job of connecting directly and activating people.”

The site is supposed to “go around” traditional media, then, to reach Millennials who are more apt to consume their news through social media, podcasts and other multi-media sources, rather than through the major networks.

Unlike previous efforts, though, the team behind Crooked Media—which includes former Obama Administration officials, Jon Lovett and Jon Favreau (in addition to Vietor)—says they won’t pretend to be non-partisan.

“We’re not journalists, we’re not unbiased, we’re not always serious and we’re certainly not always right,” reads the site’s mission statement. “But we promise a no-bulls*** conversation about politics where you can laugh, cry, scream, ridicule us daily, share your ideas, and hopefully decide that you want to help fix this mess too.”

They also promise to “talk about politics the way human beings talk,” which is probably a lofty goal for three men formerly mired in the DC space. And true to their mission, the site is already packed to the gills with funny memes, photos of multicultural youths giving each other fist-bumps, cute fonts and “Millennial-speak” which makes it seem totally authentic and not tin-eared at all (okay, so we’re being harsh).

They do admit one thing, that Trump, for all his problems, has a better ability to connect with “everyday Americans” than Hillary Clinton had, and that, ultimately, her inability to make her case to voters cost her the election in key states. But they promise to figure out a solution “together.”

Update: Jon Lovett reached out to Heat Street to say that the founders haven’t lived in DC for a while, that they hate Millennial-speak as much as anyone, and that they really would like to hear from all sides, which means this could be a legitimately interesting project.