Jeffrey Toobin

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Jeffrey Toobin
Jeffrey toobin 2012.jpg
Toobin at the 2012 Texas Book Festival
Jeffrey Ross Toobin

(1960-05-21) May 21, 1960 (age 58)
Education Harvard University (BA, JD)
Occupation Legal analyst, commentator
Notable credit(s)
The New Yorker (1993–)
CNN Senior Legal Analyst (2002–)
Spouse(s) Amy Bennett McIntosh (1986–present)
Children 3

Jeffrey Ross Toobin[1] (/ˈtbɪn/; born May 21, 1960) is an American lawyer, blogger, author, pundit,[2] and legal analyst for CNN and The New Yorker.[3] During the Iran–Contra affair, he served as an associate counsel in the Department of Justice, and moved from law into writing during the 1990s.

He has written several books, including one on the O. J. Simpson murder case. It was adapted as a series, The People v. O. J. Simpson: American Crime Story, and aired in 2016 as the first season of FX American Crime Story. It won numerous Emmy Awards.

Early life

Toobin was born to a Jewish family[4] in New York City in 1960,[5] the son of Marlene Sanders, former ABC News and CBS News correspondent, and Jerome Toobin, a news broadcasting producer.[6]


Toobin was educated at Columbia Grammar & Preparatory School, a private preparatory school in New York City, then pursued undergraduate studies at Harvard College. Toobin covered sports for The Harvard Crimson.[7] where his column was titled "Inner Toobin." Toobin graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in American History and Literature, and was awarded a Harry S. Truman Scholarship. Toobin graduated from Harvard Law School magna cum laude with a J.D. in 1986. While there, he had been an editor of the Harvard Law Review.[8]


Toobin promoting his book The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court at the 2007 Texas Book Festival.

Toobin began freelancing for The New Republic while a law student. After passing the bar, he worked as a law clerk to a federal judge and then as an associate counsel to Independent Counsel Lawrence Walsh during the Iran–Contra affair and Oliver North's criminal trial. He next served as an Assistant United States Attorney in Brooklyn.[9] According to journalist Michael Isikoff in 2013, Toobin was caught while working for Walsh for "having absconded with large loads of classified and grand-jury related documents" from Walsh's office.[10] Toobin disputed the assertion that he improperly removed documents.

Toobin wrote a book about his work in the Office of Independent Counsel. Walsh objected to this, and Toobin went to court to affirm his right to publish. Judge John Keenan of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York wrote an opinion that Toobin and his publisher had the right to release this book. Walsh's appeal of the case was dismissed by the court.[11]

Walsh later wrote that he "could understand a young lawyer wanting to keep copies of his own work, but not copying material from the general files or the personal files of others."[10] After three years as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, Toobin "resigned from the U.S. Attorney's office in Brooklyn (where he had gone to work after Walsh) and abandoned the practice of law."[10] He started working in 1993 at The New Yorker and became a television legal analyst for ABC in 1996.

Toobin has provided broadcast legal analysis on many high-profile cases. In 1994, Toobin broke the story in The New Yorker that the O. J. Simpson legal team in his criminal trial planned to play "the race card" by accusing Mark Fuhrman of planting evidence.[12] Toobin provided analysis of Michael Jackson's 2005 child molestation trial,[13] the O. J. Simpson civil case, and the Starr investigation of President Clinton. He received a 2000 Emmy Award for his coverage of the Elián González custody saga.

Toobin joined CNN in 2002.[12] In 2003, he secured the first interview with Martha Stewart about the insider trading charges against her.[3]

Toobin speaking about the Supreme Court at the John J. Rhodes Lecture in Tempe, Arizona.

Toobin is a longtime friend of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan, having met her while the two were classmates at Harvard Law School.[14] He has described Chief Justice John Roberts as "very, very conservative."[15] Regarding Justice Clarence Thomas, Toobin has said that Thomas' legal views were "highly unusual and extreme," called him "a nut," and said that Justice Thomas was "furious all the time."[16][17]

Toobin is a staff writer at The New Yorker, and he joined CNN 2002, where he is now chief legal analyst. He is the author of seven books. Toobin's book, The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court (2007), received awards from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University.[12] His next book, The Oath: The Obama White House and the Supreme Court, was published in 2012. His most recent book, American Heiress: The Kidnapping, Crimes and Trial of Patty Hearst, came out in 2016. All were New York Times Best-Sellers.

Views on U.S. Constitution

In a 2011 discussion with journalist Fareed Zakaria, Toobin stated that he believes that the United States Constitution should be amended to eliminate the inequities of the United States Electoral College, which allows for a presidential candidate to win the election despite having fewer popular votes than their opponent, and the United States Senate, which grants two senators to every state regardless of population.[18]

Personal life

In 1986, Toobin married Amy Bennett McIntosh. Paul Attanasio was best man, and Anne-Marie Slaughter was matron of honor. Toobin met Amy while they worked at the Harvard Crimson together in college. She is a 1980 Harvard graduate, holds an MBA degree from Harvard Business School,[1][19] and has held executive positions at Verizon Communications and Zagat Survey.[20] They have two adult children, a daughter and son.[20]

Toobin had an extramarital affair with attorney Casey Greenfield. She is the daughter of American television journalist and author Jeff Greenfield and the ex-wife of screenwriter Matt Manfredi.[21] They had a child in 2009.[20][22]



  1. ^ a b "J.R. Toobin Weds Amy B. McIntosh". The New York Times. 1986-06-01. Retrieved 2008-07-11.
  2. ^ "Jeffrey Toobin Criticizes Pundits Like Himself for Being Unfair to Clarence Thomas". Reason. 5 July 2016. Retrieved 18 May 2017.
  3. ^ a b "Contributors: Jeffrey Toobin". The New Yorker. Retrieved 2010-08-06.
  4. ^ Sher, Cindy (May 2, 2017). "Interview with CNN's Jeffrey Toobin, one of three best-selling authors to headline JUF Trade Dinner season". Jewish United Fund of Metropolitan Chicago. Toobin, who is Jewish, is a CNN Senior Analyst, a judicial expert, a staff writer for The New Yorker , and a bestselling author.
  5. ^ "So What Do You Do, Jeffrey Toobin, Author?". 2007-10-10. Retrieved 2008-07-11.
  6. ^ Jewish Ledger (Connecticut edition): Cindy Mindell, "Q & A with... Marlene Sanders - Award-winning woman pioneer in broadcasting", August 20, 2010
  7. ^ "Jeffrey R. Toobin | News". The Harvard Crimson. Retrieved 2017-02-10.
  8. ^ "Author and legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin '86 named this year's Class Day speaker". Harvard Law Today. Retrieved 2017-02-10.
  9. ^ Jeffrey Toobin (1991-05-01). "Opening Arguments". Commentary. Retrieved 2010-08-07. [permanent dead link]
  10. ^ a b c Gosztola, Kevin (2013-08-20) Jeffrey Toobin Preaches on Sanctity of Government Secrets Despite Once Stealing Classified Documents, Firedoglake
  11. ^ "929 F.2d 69 (1991), PENGUIN BOOKS USA INCORPORATED; Jeffrey R. Toobin, Plaintiffs-Appellees, v. Lawrence E. WALSH; Office of Independent Counsel, Defendants-Appellants".
  12. ^ a b c "Anchors/Reporters – Jeffrey Toobin". CNN. Retrieved 2010-08-06.
  13. ^ "Toobin: Jackson courtroom 'like nothing I've ever seen'". CNN. January 16, 2004. Retrieved 2016-09-19.
  14. ^ Shister, Gail (2010-05-12). "CNN's Jeffrey Toobin on Elena Kagan: 'Funny, well-informed...She's Good Company'". TV Newser. Archived from the original on 2013-01-28.
  15. ^ "Charlie Rose". Charlie Rose (talk show). 2010-10-04. Public Broadcasting Service. Archived from the original on 2012-09-27.
  16. ^ The Diane Rehm Show. 1 October 2007. NPR.
  17. ^ "Anderson Cooper 360°". Anderson Cooper 360°. 1 October 2007. CNN. Archived from the original on 8 July 2011.
  18. ^ CNN: "Fareed Zakaria and Jeffrey Toobin on updating the U.S. Constitution" By Fareed Zakaria June 27, 2011
  19. ^ The Harvard Crimson: "Jeffrey R. Toobin" By Samuel P. Jacobs The Harvard Crimson, June 04, 2007
  20. ^ a b c Rush, George (February 17, 2010). "CNN legal eagle Jeffrey Toobin in baby mama drama – with daughter of CBS News' Jeff Greenfield". Daily News (New York). Retrieved Feb 23, 2014.
  21. ^ New York Times: "Casey Greenfield, Matt Manfredi" November 21, 2004
  22. ^ New York Times: "Casey Greenfield v. the World" By ROBIN FINN February 17, 2012

External links

  • Official website
  • CNN staff biography
  • October 2007 Author Series: Jeffrey Toobin in Conversation with Lori Lightfoot.
  • Appearances on C-SPAN
  • Good Golly, Mr. Ollie : OPENING ARGUMENTS: A Young Lawyer's First Case: United States v. Oliver North
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