Kitty Felde

Jane Harman wouldn't be the first Congresswoman whose husband owned a major news magazine

The ink is almost dry on a deal to sell "Newsweek" magazine to Sidney Harman.  Harman, who built his fortune on FM radios and other audio equipment, is married to Democratic South Bay Congresswoman Jane Harman.

This isn't the first time the owner of a major news magazine had a wife on Capitol Hill.  Clare Boothe Luce served the constituents of Connecticut, serving as their Republican Congresswoman from 1943-1947.  Her husband Henry owned not only "Time," but also "Life" and "Fortune" magazines. 

I don't know whether having a husband in the publishing business increases your press coverage.  Luce was pretty good at generating publicity all by herself.  She was a journalist.  And even better known for her playwrighting.  "The Women" is her most famous work.  And I always remember my mother telling me stories about her days as an ambassador - inhaling flecks of lead paint from the ceiling of an Italian villa, getting very sick with a mysterious illness that turned out to be severe arsenic poisoning.

So is it likely that Jane Harman will end up on the cover of "Newsweek" anytime soon?  Not unless she starts inhaling lead paint on the ceiling of some House office building. 

 

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