Left-wing writer Eric Boehlert, 57, a former Media Matters pundit who clashed frequently with Breitbart News founder Andrew Breitbart, was killed tragically Monday in New Jersey when he was struck by a train while riding his bicycle.
A Montclair bicyclist who was killed by a New Jersey Transit train near the town’s Watchung Avenue station Monday night was writer Eric Boehlert, founder and editor of Press Run, a blog about the media, according to his wife, Tracy Breslin.
Boehlert, 57, was a veteran writer and media analyst and a frequent television and radio guest discussing politics and the press on CNN and CNBC. He was a founding editor of Salon magazine, a fellow with Media Matters, and a former writer with Rolling Stone and Billboard magazines. He wrote two books, “Lapdogs: How the Press Rolled Over for Bush,” and “Bloggers on the Bus.”
Breslin and Boehlert, married for 29 years, have two grown children and are longtime Montclair residents. The 6-foot-4 Boehlert was a familiar figure around town on his daily runs, and he loved to bike through town in the evenings, Breslin said.
Boehlert worked for the George Soros-funded Media Matters for America, and became a repeated foil for Andrew Breitbart, who caricatured “senior fellow” Boehlert as an archetype of left-wing political orthodoxy.
Eric Boehlert blogger @EricBoehlert continues to spin wheels over deflated ‘birther’ meme as political weapon.
— AndrewBreitbart (@AndrewBreitbart) May 17, 2011
— AndrewBreitbart (@AndrewBreitbart) June 2, 2010
Boehlert gave as good as he got:
From bad to worse: Is @andrewbreitbart Trying For “Stupidest Conspiracy Theory” Award With Pigford Allegations? http://bit.ly/hCwn65
— Eric Boehlert (@EricBoehlert) February 15, 2011
Sometimes the insults were crude, personal — and hilarious:
— AndrewBreitbart (@AndrewBreitbart) November 11, 2010
Just reconnected Facebook to Twitter. It’s been a few months. Apologies to my friends. Will get back to busting Boehlert’s balls ASAP.
— AndrewBreitbart (@AndrewBreitbart) July 6, 2010
@EricBoehlert Between you & me the stupidity you display for all to see gives me the shivers. I want an Eric Boehlert Newseum display now!
— AndrewBreitbart (@AndrewBreitbart) October 26, 2010
Despite these acrimonious exchanges, Boehlert offered condolences on Breitbart’s passing in March 2012:
Condolences to Andrew Breitbart’s friends and family today. He was a force of nature and a passionate foe.
— Eric Boehlert (@EricBoehlert) March 1, 2012
Boehlert’s gesture was a contrast to the reactions of others on the left, including Bill Maher, who smeared Breitbart as “racist.”
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.