Tales from the Trail poster

Five well-known political journalists will take a brief break from the campaign trail to share their insights with the Amherst community on Thursday, Oct. 6.

The panel discussion, “Tales from the Trail: Journalists' Insights from the 2016 Campaign,” will feature Julia Ioffe of Politico Magazine, Abby Phillip of The Washington Post, Jessica Taylor of National Public Radio and Byron Tau of The Wall Street Journal. Tim Murphy of Mother Jones will moderate the panel.

The event, which will be held in Amherst College’s Johnson Chapel at 8 p.m., is free and open to the public.

The five journalists have covered a wide range of political topics—from Russia’s potential influence and alleged hack of the Democratic National Convention, to Trump’s medical records, to the impact of Hillary Clinton’s “Between Two Ferns” appearance on her campaign.

By bringing their first-hand views of the election to campus, the panelists offer the Amherst community a chance to learn more about this unusual election season and the role of the media in the wider political process.

“The goal of the panel is to bring together top journalists for a discussion with the Amherst community about their experiences on the campaign trail,” said President Biddy Martin. “By sharing their observations and perspectives, these reporters will help shed light on the current election cycle.”

About the moderator:

Portrait of Tim Murphy

Tim Murphy has covered coal barons, sinkholes and hoboes as a senior reporter for Mother Jones magazine, but his work focuses on national politics. He has reported on the 2016 election from New Hampshire, South Carolina, Florida and Arizona. Murphy was the recipient of the National Press Club’s 2014 Angele Gingras Award for humor writing. His stories on sports and politics have been featured in Slate and the Washington Monthly.

Follow the moderator on Twitter: @timothypmurphy

About the panelists:

Portrait of Julia Ioffe

Julia Ioffe is a contributing writer for Politico, where she’s covered the intersection of Russian interests and American democracy. She has served as a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine and gained wide attention for her profile of Melania Trump in GQ. She was a Moscow-based correspondent from 2009-2012, writing primarily for Foreign Policy and The New Yorker. She is a graduate of Princeton University, where she specialized in Soviet history.

Portrait of Abby Phillip

Abby Phillip is a national political reporter covering the 2016 election for The Washington Post. Before joining The Post, she was a digital reporter for ABC News in Washington, D.C., where she covered politics, and an ABC News fellow in New York. She has written and produced stories for ABC News programs including This Week with George Stephanopoulos, Nightline and She began her journalism career as a White House reporter and blogger for Politico. She is a graduate of Harvard University.

Portrait of Byron Tau

Byron Tau is a reporter in The Wall Street Journal’s Washington, D.C., bureau, where he covers the White House and politics. Prior to joining the newspaper, he was a reporter at Politico, where he covered the Obama administration, lobbying, campaign finance and politics. Tau is a graduate of McGill University in Montreal and Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., where he has degrees in American history, political science and journalism. He's a native of Holliston, Mass.

Portrait of Jessica Taylor

Jessica Taylor is the lead digital political reporter for NPR. Based in Washington, D.C., she covers the 2016 elections and national politics for NPR digital. Taylor has also appeared on MSNBC, Fox News, C-SPAN, CNN and other local network affiliates. She began her career in Washington as research director for The Almanac of American Politics. A native of Elizabethton, Tenn., she is a graduate of Furman University in Greenville, S.C., and lives in Alexandria, Va.

Follow the panelists on Twitter: @juliaioffe | @abbydphillip | @ByronTau | @JessicaTaylor

About the event:

The event is sponsored by the Office of the President, the Center for Humanistic Inquiry and the Croxton Lecture Fund, which was established in 1988 by William M. Croxton '36 in memory of his parents, Ruth L. and Hugh W. Croxton, with a goal of helping to both educate Amherst students and bring influential speakers to campus.

Find the event on Facebook.