Eleanor Clift (born July 7, 1940) is an American political reporter, television pundit and author. She is currently a contributing editor for Newsweek magazine. Her column, "Capitol Letter" is posted each week on the Newsweek and MSNBC websites. She is a regular panelist on the nationally syndicated show The McLaughlin Group, which she has compared to "a televised food fight". She is also a political contributor for the Fox News Channel.
Born Eleanor Roeloffs in Brooklyn, New York, she grew up in the Jackson Heights neighborhood of Queens, where her parents ran a deli in Sunnyside. She went on to attend Hofstra University and Hunter College. She began her career as a secretary at Newsweek, and one of the first female reporters to earn an internship from the secretary pool. She began her broadcast career on The Diane Rehm Show on WAMU-FM, Washington, D.C., as a Friday week-in-review panelist. She became known to listeners for her good-natured acceptance of ribbing from other panelists and callers to the program.
Mrs. Clift is on the political left nearly 100% of the time. During the Clinton Administration, she was jokingly referred to as Eleanor "Rodham" Clift or Eleanor "Rodham Clifton," because of her fierce defense of Hillary Rodham Clinton and Bill Clinton. Clift has made some memorable comments on The McLaughlin Group: