I always thought it was strange how little attention Bob Herbert got as a columnist. The numbers back me up on this:
Take a look in LexisNexis and see how often various New York Times columnists have been mentioned (not syndicated) in other papers this year. Thomas Friedman gets more than 3,000 mentions, and David Brooks gets 2,650. Maureen Dowd gets 1,615; Paul Krugman, 1,179; Nicholas Kristof, 805. Bob Herbert gets 533. Web sites that shape national news coverage rarely link to him. ABC’s The Note, one of the most insidery of Washington publications, has in the past few years referred to Paul Krugman 146 times, David Brooks 129 times, and Maureen Dowd 84 times. Bob Herbert? Twice
I think the reason is that a liberal, black columnist is a little too dog-bites-man for today’s media world. If Herbert had railed about school uniforms or compared Michelle Obama to Stokely Carmichael, Mark Halperin probalby would have linked to him more.