Rank #1: Sean Hannity
Mr. Hannity, the Fox News host and political commentator, is one of the most dominant voices in conservative news media, reaching millions each day. But much of his influence comes from a powerful audience of one. Mr. Hannity spoke with Matthew Shaer, a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine, about the roots of his opinionated style, whether he considers himself a journalist and what it’s like to know the president is listening.
Rank #2: Senator Kirsten Gillibrand
Ms. Gillibrand, Democrat of New York, is one of the leaders behind a charge to overhaul policies on sexual harassment on Capitol Hill. She spoke to The New York Times’s Jennifer Steinhauer about her own experience with harassment, power dynamics, President Bill Clinton and more.
Rank #3: Steve Bannon
The Breitbart News executive chairman and former White House chief strategist, is building a shadow party behind the G.O.P. that he hopes will drive out the establishment. Mr. Bannon spoke with Jeremy W. Peters, a reporter for The New York Times, about his populist movement, his goal of ousting Mitch McConnell as Senate majority leader and more.
Rank #4: Speaker Paul Ryan
Mr. Ryan, Republican of Wisconsin, is pushing a tax plan that could be a legacy-defining achievement or a political disaster. Mr. Ryan spoke with Carl Hulse about his plan to get it through Congress, his evolving relationship with President Trump and the lessons he learned waiting tables at a restaurant across from the Capitol.
Rank #5: Ty Cobb
The White House lawyer and Kansas native talked with Matt Apuzzo, a reporter for The Times, about the state of the special counsel's investigation and the White House legal strategy, what it will mean if Paul Manafort gets indicted, that trademark handlebar mustache and more.
Rank #6: Secretary of State Rex Tillerson
America’s foreign policy playbook changed the moment Donald J. Trump was elected, leaving State Department staff and their international counterparts wondering what the new era might look like. Under Secretary Tillerson, they are still searching for answers. Mr. Tillerson spoke with Jason Zengerle about his greatest diplomatic challenge, how he factors the president’s tweets into foreign policy strategy and more.
Rank #7: Breitbart in the White House
The conservative outlet, under the guidance of the former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, is enjoying a new, more influential place in Washington’s media ecosystem in the Trump era. Charlie Spiering, Breitbart’s senior White House correspondent, spoke with Michael M. Grynbaum, a Times media reporter, about what it's like to work at a controversial organization and what he considers a great Breitbart story.
Rank #8: Senator Marco Rubio
The Florida Republican and former presidential candidate is getting into the weeds on issues like Cuban relations, the recovery efforts in Puerto Rico and immigration. He spoke with Carl Hulse about how he has approached his second term on Capitol Hill, his relationship with President Trump and more.
Rank #9: Representative Nancy Pelosi
The Democrat from California has held the highest governmental position of any woman in U.S. history and is one half of Washington’s hottest power couple — “Chuck and Nancy.” She talked with Carl Hulse about protecting one of her signature policy victories, the Affordable Care Act, as well as the 2018 election, her love of chocolate and more.
Rank #10: Lobbying in the Trump Era
In President Trump’s Washington there is a new lineup of lobbyists making deals and offering access. Nicholas Confessore, a political investigative reporter for The Times, spoke with Robert Stryk about the opportunity he saw when Mr. Trump was elected and how he has leveraged relationships in the administration for political and business success.