During the 1932 presidential campaign, Eleanor Roosevelt spent a few months as an editor. Publisher Bernarr Macfadden—whose New York Evening Graphic, a gossip rag, was nicknamed “the Pornographic”—recruited her to edit his proposed “high-class” magazine on child care, Babies, Just Babies. According to Mark Adams’s biography of Macfadden, Mr. America (Harper), Roosevelt received $500 per issue, with a proviso that the fee would increase to $1,000 if her husband won the presidency.
“Babies!” editor Roosevelt wrote in the inaugural issue. “Can you think of anything more wonderful?”
Adams says Babies, Just Babies “was a source of more ridicule than revenue—the Harvard Lampoon published a parody called Tutors, Just Tutors.” After the election, Mrs. Roosevelt resigned. It seemed “the most sensible thing to do,” she told Macfadden. And Babies, Just Babies stopped publishing.