Everipedia Logo
Everipedia is now IQ.wiki - Join the IQ Brainlist and our Discord for early access to editing on the new platform and to participate in the beta testing.
John F. Solomon

John F. Solomon

John F. Solomon is an American journalist who is an investigative reporter, a media executive, and a conservative political commentator. He is an editorialist and executive vice president of digital video for The Hill.[1] He was formerly employed as an executive and as editor-in-chief at The Washington Times.[2] While he has won a number of prestigious awards for his investigative journalism,[3][4] he has also been accused of magnifying small scandals and creating fake controversy.[5][6][7]


Solomon graduated from Marquette University with a bachelor's degree in journalism and sociology.[8]

From May 1987 to December 2006, Solomon worked at the Associated Press, where he became the assistant bureau chief in Washington, helping to develop some of the organization's first digital products, such as its online elections offering.

In 2007, he served as The Washington Post's national investigative correspondent.

The Washington Times

Executive Editor

In February 2008, Solomon became editor-in-chief of The Washington Times.[9] During this time, Solomon made a mission to make the paper's coverage more objective while expanding its reach. Under Solomon, the Times changed some of its style guide to conform to more mainstream media usage. The Times announced that it would no longer use words like "illegal aliens" and "homosexual," and instead opt for "more neutral terminology" such as "illegal immigrants" and "gay," respectively. The paper also decided to stop using "Hillary" when referring to Senator Hillary Clinton, and to stop putting the word "marriage" in the expression "gay marriage" in quotes.[10] He also oversaw the redesign of the paper's website and the launch of the paper's national weekly edition. A new television studio was built in the paper’s Washington DC headquarters, and the paper also launched a syndicated three-hour morning-drive radio news program.[11]

Solomon left the paper in November 2009 after internal shakeups and financial uncertainty among the paper's ownership.[12]


After a three-and-a-half-year hiatus, most of which was spent at Circa News, Solomon returned to the paper in July 2013 to oversee the newspaper's content, digital and business strategies.[13] He helped to craft digital strategies to expand online traffic, created new products and partnerships, and led a reorganization of the company's advertising and sales team. He also helped launch a new subscription-only national edition targeted for tablets, cellphones and other mobile devices, and helped push a redesign of the paper's website.

Solomon left the paper in December 2015 to serve as chief creative officer of the mobile news application Circa, which was relaunching at that time.[2]

Packard Media Group

Solomon was president of Packard Media Group from November 2009 to December 2015.[14] Solomon also served as journalist in residence at the Center for Public Integrity, a non-profit organization that specializes in investigative journalism, from March 2010 to June 2011.[11] He was also named executive editor of the Center for Public Integrity in November 2010 and helped oversee the launch of iWatch News, but resigned quickly after to join Newsweek/The Daily Beast in May 2011.[15][16][17]

Washington Guardian

In 2012, Solomon and former Associated Press executives Jim Williams and Brad Kalbfeld created the Washington Guardian, an online investigative news portal. It was acquired by The Washington Times when Solomon returned to the paper in July 2013.[2]


After leaving The Washington Times, Solomon became chief creative officer for Circa News. Circa is a mobile news application founded in 2011 that streams updates on big news events to users. In June 2015, it shut down, but its relaunch was announced after its acquisition by Sinclair Broadcast Group.[2]

As chief of Circa he wrote and published a number of political articles, often defending the Trump administration[18] and Michael Flynn.[19] He left in July 2017.

The Hill

Upon leaving Circa, Solomon became executive vice president of digital video for The Hill.[1][20] Until May 2018, he worked on news and investigative pieces for The Hill.[20] According to the New York Times, Solomon tended to push narratives about alleged misdeeds by Trump's political enemies.[21] In May 2018, the editor-in-chief of The Hill announced that Solomon would become an "opinion contributor" at The Hill while remaining executive vice president of digital video.[20] This came in the wake of reports that Solomon's colleagues at The Hill criticized Solomon's news reporting as lacking rigor and context.[20] He frequently appeared on Fox News, which continued to describe him as an investigative reporter, even after he became an opinion contributor for the Hill.[22]

In October 2017, Solomon published an article in The Hill about the Uranium One controversy where he insinuated that Russia made payments to the Clinton Foundation at the time when the Obama administration approved the sale of Uranium One to Rosatom.[23] Solomon's story also focused on the alleged failures of the Department of Justice to investigate and report on the controversy, suggesting a cover-up.[23] Subsequent to Solomon's reporting, the story "took off like wildfire in the right-wing media ecosystem," according to a 2018 study by scholars at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society, Harvard University.[23] No evidence of any quid pro quo or other wrongdoing has surfaced.[23]

Pro-Trump conspiracy theories

Solomon also promoted these allegations on Sean Heannity's Fox News show.[24] According to The Washington Post Solomon's pieces "played an important role in advancing a flawed, Trump-friendly tale of corruption in Ukraine, particularly involving Biden and his son Hunter", and inspired "the alleged effort by Trump and his allies to pressure Ukraine’s government into digging up dirt on Trump’s Democratic rivals."[24] Solomon's stories had significant flaws*.[24][21]* Not only had the State Department dismissed the allegations presented by Solomon as "an outright fabrication", but the Ukrainian prosecutor who made the allegations to Solomon retracted his claims.[24][21] Foreign Policy noted that anti-corrupton activists in Ukraine had characterized the source behind Solomon's claims as an unreliable narrator who had hindered anti-corruption efforts in Ukraine.[25] Solomon pushed allegations that Biden wanted to remove a Ukrainian prosecutor in order to prevent an investigation of a Ukrainian company that his son, Hunter Biden, served on; however, Western governments and anti-corruption activist wanted the prosecutor removed because he was reluctant to pursue corruption investigations.[21] By September 2019, Solomon said he still stood 100% by his stories.[24] There is no evidence of wrong-doing by Joe Biden and Hunter Biden, and no evidence that Hunter Biden was ever under investigation by Ukrainian authorities.[26] WNYC characterized Solomon's Ukraine stories as laundering of foreign propaganda.[27]

In June 2019, Solomon promoted allegations by Nazar Kholodnytsky, a disgraced Ukrainian prosecutor, and Konstantin Kilimnik, who has been linked to Russian intelligence and who happens to be Paul Manafort's former business partner, that documents which implicated Paul Manafort in crimes were fabricated.[28]

He published a story alleging that women who had accused Trump of sexual assault had sought payments from partisan donors and tabloids.[22]


In September 2019, the Washington Examiner reported that Solomon would leave The Hill at the end of the month to start his own media firm.[29]


Paul McCleary, writing for the Columbia Journalism Review in 2007, wrote that Solomon had earned a reputation for hyping stories without solid foundation.[6] In 2012, Mariah Blake, writing for the Columbia Journalism Review, wrote that Solomon "has a history of bending the truth to his storyline," and that he "was notorious for massaging facts to conjure phantom scandals."[7][24] During the 2004 presidential election between George W. Bush and John Kerry, Thomas Lang wrote for the Columbia Journalism Review that a Solomon story for the Associated Press covered criticism of John Kerry's record on national security appeared to mirror a research report released by the Republican National Committee. Lang wrote that Solomon's story was "a clear demonstration of the influence opposition research is already having on coverage of the [presidential] campaign."[30][31]

The Washington Post wrote in September 2019 that Solomon's "recent work has been trailed by claims that it is biased and lacks rigor."[24] The Post noted that Solomon had done award-winning investigative work during his early career, but that his work had taken a pronounced conservative bent from the late 2000s and onwards.[24] According to Foreign Policy magazine, Solomon had "grown into a prominent conservative political commentator with a somewhat controversial track record."[25]

In 2007, Deborah Howell, then-ombudsman at The Washington Post criticized a story that Solomon wrote for The Post which had suggested impropriety by Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards in a real estate purchase; Solomon's reporting omitted context which would have made clear that there was no impropriety.[5] Progressive news outlets ThinkProgress, Media Matters for America and Crooked Media have argued that Solomon's reporting has a conservative bias and that there are multiple instances of inaccuracies.[32][33][34] According to The Intercept, Just Security and The Daily Beast, Solomon helps to advance right-wing and pro-Trump conspiracy theories.[28][22][35] The New Republic described Solomon's columns for the Hill as "right-wing fever dreams."[36] Independent journalist Marcy Wheeler accused Solomon of manufacturing fake scandals which suggested wrongdoing by those conducting probes into Russian interference in the 2016 election.[37] Reporters who worked under Solomon as an editor have said that he encouraged them to bend the truth to fit a pre-existing narrative.[7]

In January 2018, Solomon published a report for The Hill suggesting that Peter Strzok and Lisa Page had foreknowledge of a Wall Street Journal article and that they themselves had leaked to the Wall Street Journal.[38] According to the Huffington Post, Solomon's reporting omitted that the Wall Street Journal article Strzok and Page were discussing was critical of Hillary Clinton and the FBI, Strzok and Page expressed dismay at the fallout from the article, and Strzok and Page criticized unauthorized leaks from the FBI. According to the Huffington Post, "Solomon told HuffPost he was not authorized to speak and does not comment on his reporting. He may simply have been unaware of these three facts when he published his story. But they provide crucial context to an incomplete narrative that has been bouncing around the right-wing echo chamber all week."[38]

That same month, it was reported that newsroom staffers at The Hill had complained about Solomon's reporting for the publication.[39][24][22] The staffers reportedly criticized Solomon's reporting as having a conservative bias and missing important context, and that this undermined The Hill's reputation.[39][24] They also expressed concerns over Solomon's close relationship with Sean Hannity, whose TV show he appeared on more than a dozen times over a span of three months.[39]


Solomon has received a number of prestigious awards for investigative journalism, among them the 2008 Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award and the Society of Professional Journalists' National Investigative Award together with CBS News' 60 Minutes for Evidence of Injustice;[4][40] in 2002, the Associated Press's Managing Editors Enterprise Reporting Award for What The FBI Knew Before Sept. 11, 2001, and the Gramling Journalism Achievement Award for his coverage of the war on terrorism;[40] in 1992, the White House Correspondents' Association's Raymond Clapper Memorial Award for an investigative series on Ross Perot.[41]


Citation Linkwww.adweek.com"John Solomon Joins The Hill as Executive Vice President, Digital Video". Retrieved 2017-08-04.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkportal.issn.orgWemple, Erik (2015-12-07). "John Solomon leaves Washington Times, joins Circa re-launch". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2016-02-07.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkwww.poynter.orgRomenesko, Jim (2010-09-04). "Solomon named executive editor of Center for Public Integrity". Poynter Institute. Retrieved 2019-09-26.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkwww.rfkcenter.org"40th Annual Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards". Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights. Archived from the original on 2011-01-08. Retrieved 2019-09-26.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkwww.washingtonpost.comHowell, Deborah (2007-01-28). "Accurate, but Not the Whole Story". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2019-09-27. Accurate stories can be misleading. Two recent Page 1 stories -- one on the Fairfax County libraries and the other on the sale of Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards's Georgetown house -- brought complaints that there was less there than met the reader's eye.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkarchives.cjr.org"John Solomon Gives Us Less Than Meets the Eye -- Again". Columbia Journalism Review. Retrieved 2017-11-01.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkarchives.cjr.org"Something fishy?". Columbia Journalism Review. Retrieved 2018-05-15.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkwww.linkedin.com"John Solomon | LinkedIn". www.linkedin.com. Retrieved 2016-02-07.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkbiz.yahoo.com"Ex-Washington Post Reporter to Lead a Rival: Financial News - Yahoo! Finance". biz.yahoo.com. Retrieved 2016-02-07.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkwww.washingtoncitypaper.com"Playing Center: John Solomon is pushing evenhandedness at the Washington Times. - Washington City Paper". Washington City Paper. Retrieved 2016-02-07.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkwww.cjr.org"Something fishy?". Columbia Journalism Review. Retrieved 2016-02-07.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkportal.issn.orgKurtz, Howard (2009-11-13). "Washington Times editor John Solomon resigns". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2016-02-07.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkwww.washingtontimes.com"Solomon returns to lead content, business strategies at The Washington Times". The Washingtion Times. Retrieved 2016-02-07.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkwww.zoominfo.com"John Solomon | PACKARD MEDIA GROUP LLC | ZoomInfo.com". ZoomInfo. Retrieved 2016-02-07.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkwww.poynter.org"Solomon named executive editor of Center for Public Integrity". Poynter. 2010-11-04. Retrieved 2017-07-11.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkwww.politico.comMedia, On. "John Solomon to NewsBeast - On Media". POLITICO. Retrieved 2017-07-11.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkarchives.cjr.orgMariah Blake (July–August 2012). "Something fishy?". Columbia Journalism Review. Retrieved 2018-12-24.CS1 maint: date format (link)
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkwww.niemanlab.orghttp://www.niemanlab.org/2017/07/in-circa-sinclair-sees-a-way-to-attract-independent-minded-millennials-and-sean-hannity/
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkpjmedia.comhttps://pjmedia.com/trending/2017/06/27/circa-fbis-investigation-of-michael-flynn-sure-looks-like-a-case-of-political-retaliation/
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM
Citation Linkwww.washingtonpost.comWemple, Erik (2018-05-14). "Opinion | The Hill's John Solomon moves to new spot as 'opinion contributor'". Washington Post. Retrieved 2018-05-14.
Sep 30, 2019, 1:47 AM