Lewis Katz (center) walks to court Wednesday. Photo | AP / Matt Rourke.
The war at the Philadelphia Inquirer will go on, with publisher Bob Hall still in charge and editor Bill Marimow waiting till next week to learn of his own fate.
Hall, who fired Marimow in early October, triggering these legal proceedings, ended the day on the stand, explaining how he reached his decision to fire the two-time Pulitzer winner, Marimow.
As Hall explained it, his decision was simple: He had a list of “action items” for Marimow to follow up on, including the dismissal of multiple editors. Marimow moved slower on some items than others, over a period of months, but he never budged at all on the personnel decisions.
First, testified Hall, Marimow talked up the journalistic merit of the staffers Hall targeted. Then he said there were other positions in which he could use them. Hall, however, just wanted them gone — he said, to change the culture of the Inquirer. So, when Marimow wouldn’t fire them, he fired Marimow.
But that, of course, like just about everything else among the Inquirer’s ownership, is a matter of dispute.
The hearing, which started yesterday at City Hall, has oftentimes seemed less like a legal proceeding than a simple grudge match — with fabulously wealthy men and phalanxes of attorneys with expensive smiles squaring off to settle scores.
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