Josh Gerstein is a White House reporter for POLITICO, specializing in legal and national security issues. Gerstein joined the pathbreaking political news outlet just before President Barack Obama’s inauguration and has reported extensively on how Obama’s pledge to close the Guantanamo Bay prison for war-on-terror captives went awry. His articles also have explored how expectations that the Obama administration would dramatically reform the legal architecture of the Bush administration’s anti-terrorism policies have proven to be mistaken.
Gerstein has covered the Supreme Court nominations of Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan, the Obama administration’s little-heralded crackdown on leaks and the surprisingly icy relationship between the press and the Obama White House.
From 2003 to 2008, Gerstein was The New York Sun’s national reporter and covered national politics, terrorism trials and other legal stories of national significance. He was one of few national reporters to provide in-depth coverage of the legal saga of Sami Al-Arian, a former Florida college professor who has spent nearly two decades under the scrutiny of federal prosecutors over his ties to Palestinian Islamic jihad. Gerstein also covered the trial of Lewis Libby, the Bush White House aide who was convicted on obstruction of justice charges in the investigation of the CIA leak and who later had his jail sentence commuted by the president.
Gerstein worked for ABC News from 1995 to 2003. He was what has come to be called an embed on the 1996 presidential bid of former Sen. Bob Dole (R-Kansas). Gerstein later spent five years covering the White House for ABC as a producer and correspondent. He was on the White House beat during the impeachment of President Bill Clinton and when President George W. Bush faced the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.