The New York Times has selected Ross Douthat to replace Bill Kristol on the newspaper's editorial page. Editorial page editor Andy Rosenthal emailed Times staffers this afternoon with the following announcement:
Some exciting news. We've hired Ross Douthat, currently of Atlantic. Ross will be joining the Times staff in mid-April and will be based in the Washington bureau. He will start out primarily online, but will soon be writing with increasing frequency, and then regularity, on the Op-Ed page, in the Monday slot opposite Paul. At some point, he'll also resume his work as a blogger, which I highly recommend.
If you don't know Ross, you'll find him funny and smart and sharp. He's going to be a great addition to our team. I know you'll make him welcome.
Douthat's Atlantic colleague Marc Ambinder offered praise for the "late-twenties-year-old public intellectual" tapped by the NYT.
"Bill Kristol was just a mistake," Ambinder wrote, "but boy, talk about a rebound: I think Ross is the sharpest, most innovative heterodox thinker of his generation, left or right."
Ambinder described Douthat as a "late-twenties-year-old public intellectual with the sensibility of a 60-year eminence grise, the range of a Hitchens, the pitch of a conservative AJP Taylor, the conscience of a Neibuhr and the intellectual honesty of his frequent sparring partner, Andrew Sullivan."