Lefty Bay Guardian to Merge With Once-Extreme Right Examiner

San Francisco's leading lefty newspaper was purchased by one of the city's two dailies.

Can a deal be done with the devil, if the devil is less devilish than before?

The San Francisco Bay Guardian, the longtime news organization of the city's left, is in the process of being purchased by the San Francisco Examiner, which for the better part of a decade was its right-wing counterpart. The sale, first rumored last week, is expected to be final sometime in May, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

Journalism fixture Bruce Brugmann, the Guardian's founder and to date only publisher, was reportedly looking to sell for some time. The Guardian is known for its support of the city's progressive establishment, and for frequent criticism of moderates like Mayor Ed Lee -- who has a column in the Examiner.

The Examiner was owned by right-wing billionaire Philip Anschutz until December, when a group led by Todd Vogt, formerly of a Canadian-based publishing company, bought the paper.

Vogt attempted to buy papers in Tracy and Santa Cruz County before landing the Guardian. Vogt said the Guardian's staff and editorial mission will continue unchanged.

Brugmann and his wife, Jean Dibble, had been at the helm of the Guardian since 1966. The pair are also selling the newspaper's Mississippi Street offices in a separate deal for $6.5 million, the Chronicle reported.

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