Formerly the politics editor at Salon, Zeff's work on politics, economics, and the criminal justice system has also appeared in publications including BuzzFeed and The New York Daily News, where he wrote frequently on national and New York politics. He also wrote a regular column on New York politics for Capital New York, where his coverage of the Empire State's key political players resulted in several exclusive reports and path-breaking analyses. He's been described as "Mr. New York politics," and someone who has "few peers" (which is suspiciously vague, when you think about it).
Zeff began his journalism career in 2000 as a contributor to The Village Voice, and later contributed writing and research to Selling Out: How Big Corporate Money Buys Elections, Rams Through Legislation, and Betrays Our Democracy (Harper Collins 2002), a book on the influence of money in politics.
As a commentator on public affairs, he frequently appears on television, including MSNBC, CNBC, CNN Headline News, and NY1, on programs such as "The Rachel Maddow Show," "All In with Chris Hayes," "Morning Joe," "Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell," "Hardball with Chris Matthews," "Up with Steve Kornacki," "Melissa Harris-Perry," "The Kudlow Report," and "NewsNation with Tamron Hall," among others.
He also frequently appeared as a host on MSNBC's "The Cycle" and on Sirius XM radio.
In addition, he has spoken about news and media at Brown University, Columbia University, Fordham University, the New School’s Milano School of International Affairs, New York University, and the Parliament of Finland.
Prior to working in media, Zeff developed extensive experience in government and national campaigns. He was a senior aide on Capitol Hill to Sen. Chuck Schumer, and a senior policy adviser to New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, who appointed him to develop and lead his Conviction Review Bureau, described by the New York Times as "the first statewide initiative by a law enforcement agency to address potential wrongful convictions." He got his start in campaigns working on the 2001 New York City mayoral race up-ended by the 9/11 attacks. In presidential politics, Zeff worked as a communications strategist for Barack Obama's general election campaign in 2008, and for the primary campaign of Hillary Clinton. For his earlier work handling strategic communications for a myriad of campaigns, he was hailed in a profile by the New York Daily News as a "secret election weapon."
Zeff is a graduate of Brown University, and lives with his family in Brooklyn, NY.