Richard Wolffe

Award-Winning Journalist and Political Analyst for MSNBC
Richard Wolffe
  • Covered the length of President Obama’s presidential campaign for Newsweek magazine- from announcement to election day
  • Appeared on many major news networks, including NBC, CNN, and Fox News
  • Political insider with in-depth knowledge on current events, world affairs, and the international business environment

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Richard Wolffe is an award-winning journalist and political analyst for MSNBC. He has covered three separate presidential elections, making him a White House insider and knowledgeable about President Obama and his administration. With his political and business reporting background, Wolffe addresses politics, an insider’s view of the White House, business, and world affairs.

Presidential Insider. A long-time political insider, Richard Wolffe covered the entire length of Barack Obama’s presidential campaign for Newsweek magazine, traveling with the candidate and his inner circle for 21 months, from his announcement through election day. Wolffe is the author of five books, two of which discuss President Obama:Renegade: The Making of a President, an instant New York Times best seller and widely published internationally, and, his latest, Revival: The Struggle for Survival Inside the Obama White House. The New York Times wrote of Revival that “the book showcases the author’s inside knowledge of the White House and provides some revealing insights into the president’s ambitions.” Wolffe is also prominently featured in the HBO documentary on the Obama campaign, By the People. As the senior White House correspondent, Wolffe has also written several cover stories about the President for Newsweek, including What He Believes (on Obama’s faith) and Black & White (about Obama and racial politics).

Wolffe covered President George W. Bush and his Texas team in 1999, at the start of the presidential campaign. He travelled with then-Governor Bush for more than a year, through the election of 2000. He played a leading role in the HBO documentary of the 2000 Bush campaign, Journeys with George, and his Newsweek cover stories about President Bush include W, Bush in the Bubble (about the president after Hurricane Katrina), and Weight of the World (the behind-the-scenes story of how Bush handled the Lebanon war). In the 2004 presidential election, he covered the chaotic Howard Dean campaign before switching to John Kerry’s campaign.

Political and Business Analyst. Wolffe began writing about American politics as a senior journalist at the Financial Times, serving as its deputy bureau chief and U.S. diplomatic correspondent in Washington, D.C. In that capacity, he covered business and political affairs and reported on U.S. foreign policy at the State Department and National Security Council. 

His earlier work for the Financial Times included extensive coverage of the Microsoft antitrust trial and the Clinton administration’s plans to break up the company. His work on regulatory and business issues included covering the Treasury Department, the Federal Trade Commission, the Securities and Exchange Commission, and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. In the United Kingdom, he also reported on the tumultuous period leading to Tony Blair’s landslide victory in 1997, and, on the business side, investment management and financial advisory firms.

Wolffe appears frequently on MSNBC as a political analyst. He has also appeared on NBC, CNN, and Fox News, as well as international media including British, Canadian, and Australian television.

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Richard Wolffe on Understanding People in Politics

From Crisis to Crisis: What Lies Ahead for President Obama and his White House? In the two years since his extraordinary election, President Obama has lurched from crisis to crisis, from epic highs to disastrous lows. Why does President Obama keep sinking into these holes and how does he dig his way out? What does it say about his character, his management style, and his inner circle? What role is played by the political and media culture of today’s Washington? With unrivaled access to the President and his inner circle, Richard Wolffe reveals the true story of a deeply divided White House. Drawing on his unmatched experience of covering the length of the Obama campaign, Wolffe explains how the second half of Obama’s presidency will change – and how it will stay the same – with a new team inside the West Wing.

Campaign Circus: The Road to the White House in 2012. The 2012 Presidential election is underway, and after three change elections in succession – in 2006, 2008 and 2010 – voters have not lost their appetite for rejecting the establishment and gambling on newcomers. How will the public mood and the politics of Washington shape the field of Republican hopefuls? What is the path to the nomination, and what kind of candidates can navigate it? What are the chances of a serious primary challenge to President Obama? Drawing on the experience of intensively covering three presidential campaigns – Bush in 2000, Kerry in 2004, and Obama in 2008 – Richard Wolffe explains what kind of skills and characters will succeed in 2012 and what kind of challenges they will face from journalists. The dynamics of the two parties have changed dramatically over the last decade, and so have the candidates who can win the biggest prize in politics.

It’s the Economy, Stupid: What Business Can Expect From President Obama and Washington. Where does President Obama fit on the economic spectrum? What advice and relationships does he rely on as he crafts business legislation? In its first phase, the Obama White House was confronting economic and financial collapse. In its second phase, it began a broad effort to find a balance between business and government. Now in its third phase, Obama’s team is leaning heavily on new regulations. Drawing on unrivalled access at the White House, as well as a decade of financial and business journalism, Richard Wolffe explains how the new economic and political teams inside the West Wing – and a new presidential focus on deficits and the political center – will shape the business outlook in the Obama presidency.

America First: The Future of American Leadership in a Rapidly Changing World. Is President Obama a dove or a hawk? Where do America’s most important alliances stand after two years of his presidency? Where will he lead the world on terrorism, free trade, climate change, and the Middle East? Obama’s interactions with the emerging economies of China, India and Brazil are shaped not just by his dealings with their leaders but by his personal appeal to their massive populations. Obama has a hugely ambitious agenda that contrasts sharply with his predecessor’s – both in style and substance. Will the Obama agenda have any impact in a world that seems to be spinning away from American dominance? Or will the world naturally lean towards American leadership as it has so many times before? Based on exclusive interviews with Obama over the last four years, and drawing on decades of foreign policy expertise, Richard Wolffe explains how the next two years of American diplomacy and power will be critical not just to a presidential legacy, but also to the shape of a new world order that is rapidly emerging.

The International Business Environment. Wolffe began writing about American politics as a senior journalist at the Financial Times, serving as its deputy bureau chief and U.S. diplomatic correspondent in Washington, D.C. There he covered business and political affairs and reported on U.S. foreign policy. His earlier work for the Financial Times also included extensive coverage of the Microsoft antitrust trial and the Clinton administration’s plans to break up the company. His work on regulatory and business issues included covering the Treasury Department, the Federal Trade Commission, the Securities and Exchange Commission, and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. With an extensive background in financial and business reporting for more than eight years, Wolffe addresses the current global fiscal crisis and the economy.

World Affairs. As a political analyst in both the United Kingdom and America, Richard Wolffe appears as a commentator frequently on MSNBC, NBC, CNN, Fox News, and international media including British, Canadian, and Australian television. A journalist for both the Financial Times and Newsweek, he covered U.S. foreign policy during a post-9/11 era and the war in Iraq. Wolffe has also extensively interviewed two Presidents – George W. Bush and Barak Obama – and their national security aides on foreign policy. Wolffe’s understanding of American leadership in the world was also shaped by his perspective as a widely-travelled journalist and analyst born in Europe who has personal ties to North Africa and the Middle East. He addresses world affairs from a holistic perspective and gives a fresh viewpoint on the world’s most pressing issues.

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