To begin with: for those who don't know, Ezra Klein has always been a terrific friend and supporter of Plain Blog, of me, and of political scientists in general. So I'm not exactly unbiased on this. On the other hand, I'd take his support to be pretty convincing evidence that he is not, as Ioffe believes, always looking "upward" -- I mean, really, when Ezra first took notice of me I couldn't have been more of a nobody, and even now it's hard to see that there's much percentage in it for him in (as he does) occasionally tweeting out one of my posts. I think Ed Kilgore nails it: Ezra has a great talent for collegiality.
Back to DeLong: he points out four really interesting questions Ioffe could have tried to answer in her profile:
Just what is Ezra Klein doing that gets him 100,000 page views a day (it is a very good day on which I get more than 50,000) and makes out-of-town newspaper bureau chiefs and senior senatorial staffers say that they learn "more from Ezra Klein on any given day than from the entire national news staff of the New York Times?Yes.
Why doesn't Wonkblog face more competition, or at least see more attempted imitators?
Why is Ezra Klein doing this at the Washington Post? [...]
Can Wonkblog survive at the Washington Post, or will its DNA destroy Wonkblog as we know it?
The thing about Wonkblog is how astonishingly good it is. Ezra is exactly right that policy was (and is) undercovered by the general-interest press, but presumably that's systematic, and he's found a way to break through that, somehow. That's an important story! Not only that, but he's expanded into his current format while maintaining consistent, terrific quality. That's an interesting story! Perhaps even more interesting than who he spoke with at the White House Correspondents' Dinner.
Granted, that story, especially the first half, would have a lot less to do with Ezra Klein than it would with the general orientation of a large group of bloggers, some in roughly Ezra's generation but many not, who place policy far more in the center of their interest in politics than has traditionally been the case with most reporters.
(Oh, and I've never met Gene Sperling, but I suspect DeLong is exactly right in his Klein/Sperling comments. Also: yes, Sperling is an important player at the moment, but Ioffe is telling a story about the White House Correspondents' Dinner: there are lots of important players in that room! And by the way, that includes Ezra Klein, who the WH might just want to be talking to for their own purposes -- in other words, it's possible that Ioffe's informant has the story backwards).
Anyway, not that there's anything wrong with doing a personality profile, but DeLong is right: we're not getting the interesting parts of this story. So: Great catch!