The Washington Post Co. (WPO) probably isn't going to get much more than a token $1 when it sells Newsweek. But it's being awfully choosy about where that dollar comes from.

The publisher has been disqualifying potential Newsweek suitors left and right, in some cases over not much more than their unsavory associations. A bid from Avenue Capital Partners has reportedly fallen into disfavor because the hedge fund is a part owner of American Media, publisher of the National Enquirer, and would use that company to handle Newsweek's business-side functions. Earlier the Post. Co. walked away from Newsmax Media and hedge fund manager Thane Ritchie, neither of whom was judged to be a "suitable steward." Newsmax publishes an eponymous conservative magazine, while Ritchie is a libertarian who has dabbled in third-party politics.

That leaves a handful of possible buyers, among whom Sidney Harman, a 91-year-old stereo equipment mogul, is now said to be the frontrunner. Harman's pitch appeals to the Post Co. in part because he proposes to maintain 250 of Newsweek's current 325 staffers, more than the other buyers would retain. But it's not as though Harman comes without political baggage of his own: His wife, Jane Harman, is a Democratic congresswoman from California. (Avenue Capital owner Marc Lasry, whose bid has not yet been ruled out, is also a heavy donor to Democrats.)

There's still the possibility of a dark-horse candidate swooping in at the last moment, as happened in 2004 when Bruce Wasserstein bought New York magazine out from under the nose of Mort Zuckerman and others. A Newsweek insider says the rumor on the staff is there are two interested parties still circling that have yet to be named.

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John

I can't believe that Newsweek calls itself "Newsweek." I had been a Newsweek subscriber for over 40 years. When Newsweek stopped reporting the news and devoted itself to editorial comment and feature articles I cancelled my subscription. I have spent most of my career selling or managing technology. Yet I do appreciate the printed word. Newsweek just didn't get it. Maybe someone who buys it will.

August 02 2010 at 5:50 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jeff

well he better hurry!

August 02 2010 at 4:32 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
wmanonfire51

Newsweek,Time etc just doesn't understand people are fed up with their slant left only way of reporting news. Today americans have a choice which is something we didn't have in pass and is why Time,Newsweek etc thrived. The left slant on news is no longer our only obtion which is why left slanted news is going out of business.

August 02 2010 at 3:05 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Steve

The jokes continue from the Crazy Rightwing Asylum (showcased as though it is "conventional wisdom" by the posters here). Newsweek is a Washington Beltway magazine, i.e. it is Center-Right while the entire Washington Establishment (the media and the lawmakers) pretend it is Liberal. Just like CNN, MSNBC, The Washington Post and the Democratic Party. On rare occasions Newsweek presents a story that is actually on the Left, and Conservative heads explode because for ONCE their narrative doesn't get catered to like it does virtually everywhere else.
In not wanting Conservative hatchet-site Newsmax to own them, they are doing the right thing (overt propaganda should not be fed), but their publication is much closer to Newsmax than either wants to admit.
And Jane Harman, who is discussed in these comments as a Liberal, called herself a "Republican" in a 1998 race, supports Bush's warrantless wire-tapping program, is beholden completely to AIPAC, supported the Iraq War, supports Health Care Tort Reform, voted to abolish the Estate Tax, supports the VRHTP Act (a free speech denier to Muslims bill that the ACLU has fought), is on the fence about pre-emptive military strikes... Yeah, she is really on the far Left. You spoiled extremist Conservatives wouldn't know the real Left Wing if it slapped you in your border-line treasonous faces.

August 02 2010 at 1:00 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Steve's comment
JDBresumes

Steve, what you DON'T know about the "Right" would fill X number of stadiums! To li' ol' me - and gazillions on the Right and among the Tea Party crowd like me (OK, I give you permission to retch NOW and on the spot!) - when I see TIME & Newsweek on the grocery check=out line, I'm rarely interested in reading (let alone actually plunking down good money to purchase that nonsense!) either one of them (unless the cover story grabs my weak-kneed attention), having read them from time to time in the dentist or doctor's office - and, yes, compared to my "salad days" when Luce published TIME, things have gone 180 in the other direction. That's not necessarily a bad thing - just that readers like me are turned off by the leftist message (notice that I didn't say "Far Left"). Just because we have a point of view virtually 180 opposite of yours doesn't mean that we have to read your crap, nor do you have to read ours! Free country & all that...

As for Harmon, anyone who's fallen in disfavor (to put it mildly) with Nazi Piglosi must be doing SOMETHING right!! No, we know she's a Dem and a Liberal, but she's more in the mold of Feinstein than Boxer - i.e., reasonable, not whacky Lefty Looney (and super power-grab mad!). And how can you blame Harmon for opposing the estate tax when she stands to lose mucho dinero (unless - and I'm sure this is the case - the entire estate of her wealthy husband is totally sheltered in various trusts). I certainly don't begrudge her - if I had that much money, I'd try to cheat the spending fools in DC out of as much of it as I could - wouldn't anyone?!?

Yes, she supports AIPAC - most, but, of course, not all Jews do. Many want to hand Israel over to the Pakis because they foolishly think that a 2-state solution is even possible. But that's the subject of another rant...

August 02 2010 at 5:28 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
bhallassoc

It is spelled "eschewing" not eshewing.

August 02 2010 at 12:20 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
LRP Consulting

"The publisher has been disqualifying potential Newsweek suitors left and right." There's a correction to this story. The publisher has been disqualifying suitors right and right. I subscribed to this magazine for thirty years but gave up on it when it became "Opinion Week". When it goes under, few will lament its passing.

August 01 2010 at 11:57 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
a1rushing

Just what America needs, another biased liberal reading!!!

August 01 2010 at 11:19 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Fred

If it doesn't move away from its nutty left-wing biases, it will be worth $0.10 within a year. The market has so many left-wing publications and other media, that the competition is too great.

August 01 2010 at 11:06 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
jay love

imagine congresswoman Jane Harman having to wake up next to that 91 year old corps every morning? I guess as she is much younger than him she married the old coot for his money and her political career?? oh well, another of the democraps from Calif. that need to be replaced!!!

August 01 2010 at 10:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Robert Cape

I got a hot flash for you political insects, Newsweek killed it self, not by being left or right, but by slowly cutting reporters out of its staff. The silly idiots then set it up to read like a web page, but in "paper", you can't wheel your mouse through all the ads for pills and crap. When it became impossible to read, I dropped my subscription after 30 years. It became an advertising "shopper" with filler, and I get that free from my local paper, bad as its coverage of anything but sales is. Libs and Tea Partiers are not the whole world, children, except to you without lives and with keyboards.

August 01 2010 at 10:54 PM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply