KK: Now that you’re back in journalism, is there a conflict of interest in covering anything relating to the McCains and the campaign?

MG: We have an agenda at The Weekly Standard. It’s overt. McCain was fairly well in line with that agenda, out of all the candidates. I think it’s ridiculous when you see the stuff on the other side. Jay Carney is going to be the communications director for the vice president. I mean, Time is not supposed to be an ideological magazine. I don’t have a problem with that, either, but when people got bent out of shape with me going over there—this wasn’t a major shift for me. This was the same thing as before.

KK: Think you’d ever go back to a campaign?

MG: It was brutal work, but it’s hard to say no to a presidential campaign. Plus it was something I was good at. I was a cudgel. I pissed off the media. They were furious about it. That was the effect the campaign was looking for.

Kate Klonick is a journalist in New York City. She has written for ABCNews.com, Esquire, The Guardian, The Washington Independent and Talking Points Memo.