Wayne Barrett, a vitally important New York investigative journalist, who, for nearly four decades at the Village Voice, tenaciously uncovered the truth about politicians and business leaders, died yesterday in Manhattan. He was 71.
Barrett covered five mayors, from Abe Beame to Michael Bloomberg, dissecting the men and their administrations in muckraking articles, and in books, including,”City for Sale: Ed Koch and the Betrayal of New York” (1988), co-written with his mentor, Jack Newfield, and “Rudy!: An Investigative Biography of Rudy Giuliani” (2001).
The first reporter to shed light on now President (!) Trump’s slippery business methods and ethics, Barrett, in 1979, detailed the developer’s use of his father’s political connections and abuse of government subsidies. In 1993, Barrett published “Trump: The Deals and the Downfall,” which gained renewed attention during the recent presidential campaign, as Barrett continued to report on the unlikely candidate.
In January 2011, in his final column for the Voice, Barrett wrote about the work he had chosen, “There is no other job where you get paid to tell the truth.”