The Texas Observer, a progressive publication that has been covering politics in the Lone Star State since 1954, has survived its near-death experience — at least for now. The Texas Tribune reports that the one-time home of the late, legendary Molly Ivins has raised $300,000, most of it through a GoFundMe, since announcing it would close and is now plotting a path forward.
This is good news, of course. Still, telling your readers that you’re going to shut down unless they respond to an emergency appeal does not constitute a business model. The reality is that the Tribune, a large, well-funded nonprofit that is grounded in reporting rather than ideology, has established itself as the one essential outlet for coverage of politics and public policy in Texas.
I hope the Observer can survive — but if it does, it will be in the shadow of the Tribune.