Tim Russert, 1950-2008

We’re off duty for the next couple of days: the lovely Nina and I are enjoying a brief visit to San Francisco (look below the fold for a view of Nob Hill, with fog rolling in, as seen from the 12th floor of the Mark Hopkins Hotel).

But I did want to take time out from our romantic interlude to join the chorus lamenting the startling death of Tim Russert, whose keen mind and extraordinary gifts will be missed by all. He was one of the greatest journalists, interviewers, and political analysts of my lifetime, and I am shocked by his untimely death.

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  1. JK says

    Moments ago I sent an e-mail to one of your regulars Malcolm, I’m going to try to paste it onto this comment.

    I never met the man except as you did. But I think I read him as you seem to’ve. I could see his exuberance for his subject, he seemed non-partisan. I only found out tonight he worked for Moynihan-when he died I felt the country and the Senate lost so much.

    Tim did his homework, and he kept his subjects honest, knew in a non mean-spirited way how to say, “now hold on, let’s see what you said in so and so.” He didn’t gloat when he pointed out discrepancies.

    I watched him for a long time and you know what? It was only a quite short time ago that I came to fully appreciate his integrity, his grit. The circumstance only concerned MTP tangentially. He was the sole journalist (albeit an attorney licensed and an officer of the court in the district in which he testified) to have the balls to testify, “Mr Libby is lying.” Only Mr. Russert had the gravitas so that when his Grand Jury testimony was given, the Court had no way out. Scooter Libby (and by extension, Cheney) were guilty of violating Federal Law. High crimes and misdemeanors.

    When his eulogy is spoken in his service that one thing, which I find most admirable, will likely not be noted. I do not know from whence his sense of either duty or honor came from. I can see no one who can fill his shoes.”

    I’ve left out my opening, my ending. Perchance any who have more personal ties to Mr Russert reads this and disagrees with what I’ve written, I apologize.

    Posted June 14, 2008 at 4:22 am | Permalink
  2. Malcolm says

    Very well said indeed, JK, and I thank you for posting it. Russert’s integrity and exceptional gifts made him truly sui generis, and as you say that is going to make his shoes very difficult to fill.

    Posted June 14, 2008 at 12:20 pm | Permalink