Former CNN Anchor John Avlon Is Running for Congress. Yes, Really.

Political News

As it turns out, old CNN anchors never die. They just fade away and become members of Congress.

Former CNN anchor/prosecutor John Avlon retired from the network two weeks ago and now we know why. Mr. Avlon fancies himself — as most media members do today — as a savior of America.


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Who or what is Avlon going to be saving America from? You needn’t ask.

“I believe the United States is the greatest democracy the world has ever known. But right now, our democracy is in danger,” the former news anchor said in a video posted to X. “This election is not a drill. It’s up to all of us to step up and get off the sidelines. And that’s why I’m running for Congress, in New York’s 1st District. There’s just too much at stake for the country and the community that I love.”

In a contest between Trump’s values and Avlon’s values, who wins? 

“We need to build the broadest possible coalition to defeat Donald Trump, defend our democracy, and win back the House from his MAGA minions who don’t even seem interested in solving problems anymore,” he added.

“MAGA minions?” How alliterative! That might be the literary high point of his campaign.


Seriously, John Avlon? Member of Congress? The 1st Congressional District in New York is a swing district currently represented by first-term GOP member of Congress Nick LaLota. Avlon is running against former state Sen. James Gaughran and former New York City administrative law judge Craig Herskowitz, Not much competition for a nationally known face like Avlon.

However, he’s also running against organic chemist Nancy Goroff, who ran against Lee Zeldin in 2020 and lost by 11 points. She has the virtue of not being a total unknown.

The Hill:

Avlon also vowed to focus on rebuilding the middle class, investing in infrastructure, protecting women’s reproductive rights and combatting climate change.

His announcement comes just two weeks after departing CNN, which he joined in 2010 and where he became a full-time employee in 2018. He is also the former editor-in-chief of The Daily Beast and a founding leader of the “No Labels” movement.

The National Republican Congressional Committee issued a statement saying that Avlon “adds even more leftist fuel to an already crowded dumpster fire of a Democrat primary.”

“We look forward to litigating this smug, liberal hack’s past so voters can see just how Left he and the rest of the modern Democrat party have become,” NRCC spokesperson Savannah Viar added.


CNN contributor and former Obama campaign manager David Axelrod said, “My old colleague @JohnAvlon would be a great and impactful member of Congress. He’s thoughtful, incisive and passionate about our country and its future,” Axelrod wrote on X in response to the campaign announcement.

There’s something slightly nauseating about any media figure, right or left, cashing in on their notoriety and name recognition to grasp for power. It’s a line that shouldn’t be crossed. That Avlon felt comfortable crossing it says a lot about America in the early years of the 21st century.

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