WASHINGTON — Liz Sidoti, the chief political writer for The Associated Press who led the news cooperative's coverage of the historic 2008 presidential contest, has been named AP's political editor as the 2012 race heats up between a still-evolving GOP field and President Barack Obama.
The appointment was announced Tuesday by AP's Washington bureau chief, Sally Buzbee.
"Liz's career is steeped in AP's rich tradition of being first with political news; she's a ferocious competitor. Even more remarkable is her ability to push and improve the work of those around her," Buzbee said. "She is a model for how journalists can cut through the political noise and fit the pieces together to explain what is happening in politics and why it matters to people beyond the nation's capital."
In her new role, Sidoti will lead a team of political reporters in Washington as well as guide national coverage by AP's network of journalists in every state capital. A former Ohio statehouse reporter for the AP, she will be responsible for leveraging that unique 50-state resource to ensure the AP breaks political news, conveys the electorate's changing mood and explains issues that matter to voters. Above all, she will ensure that the AP provides clarity during an election that will affect every American.
Sidoti's background in reporting from a battleground state will help her orchestrate that coverage, said Mike Oreskes, AP's senior managing editor for U.S. news.
"The American presidential election is one of our most important franchises," Oreskes said. "From the early days of Iowa to the results on election night, AP is there, and Liz's passion and experience will be an important part of driving us to absolutely top-flight performance."
Sidoti will work with video, photo and interactives teams to keep AP competitive in all formats.
Sidoti, 33, has covered national politics for The Associated Press since 2003.
She was named chief national political writer for the news cooperative in 2009, becoming the AP's lead reporter covering national campaigns while tracking political trends in federal, state and local governments and in the country at large. She is a veteran of two presidential campaigns – in 2004 and 2008 – and two midterm congressional campaigns – in 2006 and 2010.
She was a White House reporter for the AP covering Obama's inaugural six months, and also spent 18 months reporting from Congress on national security and foreign affairs issues.
Sidoti joined the AP in Cincinnati in 1999, and spent four years covering the Ohio statehouse and politics. Prior to AP, she did reporting stints at The Columbus Dispatch, The Repository in Canton, Ohio, and the Record-Courier in Portage County, Ohio. A native of Kent, Ohio, Sidoti has a bachelor's degree in journalism from Ohio University.