Weighing who goes where requires juggling multiple factors:

  1. Strength of prose.
  2. Originality of voice and personality.
  3. Quality, creativity, and effectiveness of arguments.
  4. Is the column really their best medium?
  5. Consistency of quality. (A great columnist needs to be strong every week — they can’t constantly hit or miss.)
  6. Impact they have on shaping both the current debates and conservative thought.

So here’s version 1 of the list. (I’ve put John’s ranking in parentheses after their name if they appeared on his list.)

15. Seth Mandel (not included)

14. Jonathan V. Last (not included)

13. Sean Trende (16)

12. Frank Gaffney (not included)

11. Ben Shapiro (20)

10. Walter Williams (6)

9. Jonah Goldberg (5)

8. Michael Barone (14)

7. Charles Krauthammer (17)

6. Daniel Pipes (not included)

5. Dennis Prager (13)

4. Mark Steyn (1)

3. Stanley Kurtz (not included)

2. Thomas Sowell (2)

1. Ann Coulter (4)

As stated, I’m not planning on budging on my last two choices — and will make my arguments in the completed list. But if anyone would like to make the case against Thomas Sowell and Ann Coulter as the Conservative Movement’s two top writing MVPs, then by all means…


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