What makes a great Washington scoop?

We know our political journalism is deeply, deeply messed up. But Politico is taking process coverage to a new level with its coverage of its coverage of Biden calling Republican debt negotiators terrorists. I get that it’s defending itself against other outlets questioning sources, something any publication would do. But how self-satisfied is this?

All told, this was exactly what makes a great Washington scoop: It was an exclusive report that drove the political conversation — and continues to do so — on a major issue. The fact that we’re still talking about it, Obama is still being asked about it and The Washington Post is still fact-checking this 16 days later shows the story still has legs.

Whether or not Biden used the term “terrorist” in describing Republicans’ negotiating tactics – a matter of precisely zero substance – is, apparently, a “major issue.” That we’re still talking about it is depressing.

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