The Federalist

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The Federalist is a right-wing web magazine founded in 2013.[1] "The Federalist may have once had a 'never Trump' image, but the conservative publication moved quickly rightward as President Donald Trump became president and took over the Republican Party. The outlet is now known for vigorously defending Trump, for its trolling and conspiracy-laden posts, and for attacking liberal media. Sometimes trafficking in racism, The Federalist had a 'black crime' tag until someone exposed the tag on Twitter," CMD reported.[2]

The Federalist is a project of FDRLST Media Foundation, a certified 501(c)(3) charity and is not legally related to the Federalist Society.

News and Controversies

Accused Democrats of "Trying to Steal the Election in Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania"

An article published during extended vote-counting in the days following the 2020 presidential election accused Democrats of voter fraud in Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania.[3][4] Joe Biden's vote count received large increases in Michigan and Wisconsin overnight between November 3rd and November 4th. Reuters explained, "It is true that mail-in ballots will be counted in Pennsylvania up to three days after Election Day, provided they were posted by Election Day, including if they have no postmark. However, large spikes in Biden votes were due to an administrative error in Michigan and the inputting of Milwaukee absentee results in Wisconsin."[4]

Falsely Claimed Masks Worn to Prevent COVID-19 "Don't Work" or are "Making Us Ill"

In October 2020, the Federalist incorrectly claimed in two separate articles that "More people who wear masks become sick with COVID-19 compared to non-mask wearers, therefore masks don’t work or are making us ill" and "'Mask mandates do nothing to stop [the spread of] COVID[-19]'; There is 'overwhelming scientific evidence' that masks do not work."[5][6]The science education website Health Feedback rated both of these claims incorrect.[5][6]

In March 2020, former Federalist writer Robert Tracinski said, "in the past few years, [The Federalist] has transformed from a fresh and vibrant platform representing a diverse spectrum of ideas on the right to a conspiracy-mongering partisan rag that has now become a menace to public health.[7]

Called Indigenous People's Day "Far Worse" than Columbus Day, Claimed Police Shootings a Result of "Resisting Arrest"

A 2017 New York Times opinion piece said conservative websites like the "The Daily Wire aren’t alone in pandering to their readers", saying that [The Federalist published] an article titled “Why ‘Indigenous Peoples’ Day’ Is Far Worse Than Columbus Day,” which makes the case that the historical violence of some Native American peoples wash Columbus clean of his genocidal sins... That same publication had a 'black crime' tag on its website until two weeks ago, which included an article titled 'If You Don’t Want Police to Shoot You, Don’t Resist Arrest.' The subheading: 'Every time I hear of a black man getting killed by the cops, he’s almost always a criminal thug I have no desire to defend.'"[8]


The Federalist is a project of FDRLST Media, a 501(c)(3) which is not required to disclose its donors.[9] Some of its foundation supporters, however, can be found through their IRS filings. George E. Coleman Jr. Foundation, which has funded Council for National Policy and Pacific Research Institute, invested $148,022 in FDRLST Media in 2017.[10] In 2020, Center for Media and Democracy exposed DonorsTrust and the Ed Uihlein Family Foundation as the first two funders of the publication.[2]

Core Financials (FDRLST Media Foundation)


  • Total Revenue: $1,500,000
  • Total Expenses: $231,440
  • Net Assets: $1,908,756


  • Total Revenue: $799,000
  • Total Expenses: $152,491
  • Net Assets: $640,196


  • Total Revenue: "Gross receipts less than $25,000"
  • Total Expenses: Unreported
  • Net Assets: Unreported


As of 2022:[14]


  • Mollie Hemingway, Editor-In-Chief
  • Sean Davis, CEO and Co-founder
  • Joy Pullmann, Executive Editor
  • David Harsanyi, Senior Editor
  • John Daniel Davidson, Senior Editor
  • Christopher Bedford, Senior Editor
  • Emily Jashinsky, Culture Editor
  • Kylee Griswold, Assistant Editor
  • Eddie Scarry, D.C. Columnist
  • Madeline Osburn, Managing Editor
  • Elle Reynolds, Assistant Editor
  • Tristan Justice, Western Correspondent
  • Jordan Boyd, Staff Writer
  • Rachel Bovard, Senior Tech Coumnist
  • Eleanor Bartow, Features Editor
  • Mark Hemingway, Book Editor
  • Samuel Mangold-Lenett, Staff Editor
  • Victoria Marshall, Staff Writer
  • Shawn Fleetwood, Staff Writer

Former Staff

  • Ben Domenenech, publisher
  • Bre Payton, staff writer
  • David Marcus, New York correspondent
  • Joshua Lawson, managing editor
  • Jordan Davidson, staff writer
  • Kylee Zempel, assistant editor
  • William Newton, art critic

Senior Contributors

  • Margot Cleveland
  • Ben Weingarten
  • Helen Raleigh
  • Christopher Jacobs
  • Stella Morabito
  • Chuck Devore
  • Nathanael Blake
  • Jonathan S. Tobin
  • Evita Duffy
  • Sumantra Maitra
  • Casey Chalk
  • Auguste Meyrat
  • Kyle Sammin
  • Rich Cromwell
  • Jayme Metzgar
  • Inez Feltscher Stepman
  • Maureen Mullarkey
  • Georgi Boorman
  • Chad Felix Greene
  • Kelsey Bolar
  • Ilya Shapiro
  • Glenn T. Stanton
  • Libby Emmons

Former Senior Contributors

  • Elle Reynolds
  • Ellie Bufkin
  • Holly Scheer
  • Jonah Gottschalk
  • Molly McCann
  • Nicole Russell
  • Paulina Enck

Board of Directors

As of December 2020 (FDRLST Media Foundation):[11]

  • Mollie Hemingway, President
  • Mark Hemingway, Secretary
  • Nicholas Nordseth, Treasurer

Contact Information

The Federalist
611 Pennsylvania Ave SE, #247
Washington, DC 20003

FDRLST Media Foundation
666 Dundee Road Bldg 600
Northbrook, IL 60015

Email (general inquiries):
Email (media inquiries):
Phone: (571) 358-9028

Articles and Resources

IRS Form 990 Filings



Related SourceWatch

External Articles


  1. Ben Domenech, "Introducing The Federalist", The Federalist, September 18, 2013, accessed December 14, 2020.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Alex Kotch, "Who Funds the Federalist? Finally, We Know.", Exposed by CMD, December 9, 2020, accessed December 15, 2020.
  3. Maxwell Tani, "Twitter Flags Pro-Trump Outlet The Federalist’s ‘Misleading’ Election Fraud Claim", Daily Beast, November 4, 2020, accessed December 15, 2020.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Reuters Staff, "Fact check: Biden vote spikes and county recount do not prove Democrats are trying to steal the election in Michigan and Wisconsin", Reuters, November 5, 2020, accessed December 15, 2020.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Flora Teoh, "Mask use does not increase risk of COVID-19 as viral social media posts claim", Health Feedback, October 14, 2020, accessed December 15, 2020.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Iria Carballo-Carbajal, "Wearing face masks helps reduce the spread of COVID-19, but it only confers partial protection and should be combined with additional public health measures", Health Feedback, November 11, 2020, accessed December 15, 2020.
  7. Robert Tracinski, "The Federalist’s Dangerous Coronavirus Trutherism", Bulwark, March 30, 2020, accessed December 15, 2020.
  8. Jane Coaston, "The Hollow Bravery of Ben Shapiro", New York Times, October 12, 2017, accessed December 15, 2020.
  9. Internal Revenue Service, FDRLST Media 501(c)(3) status change, Tax Exempt Determination Letter, March 12, 2019, accessed December 14, 2020.
  10. Rosie Gray, "The Weekly Standard’s Corporate Owner Considered Buying The Federalist", BuzzFeed News, August 28, 2019, accessed December 15, 2020.
  11. 11.0 11.1 FDRLST Media Foundation, 2020 Form 990, organizational tax filing, November 10, 2021.
  12. FDRLST Media Foundation, 2019 Form 990, organizational tax filing, November 16, 2020.
  13. FDRLST Media Foundation, [2018 IRS 990-N Filing], Internal Revenue Service, 2019.
  14. The Federalist, Contributors, organizational website, accessed September 8, 2022.