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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Tim Russert RIP

It certainly came as a shock to everyone involved in politics or journalism to learn that Tim Russert suddenly died today. He was 58, relatively young, and professionally, in the prime of life.
I didn’t know him personally, but know lots of folks who did, and you never really heard an unkind word said about him. Sure, people had issues with his interviewing style (particularly politicians terrified that he would skewer them), but in an industry overpopulated with, well, self-centered and half-educated jackasses, Russert was by all accounts remarkably decent and knowledgeable, despite an iconic position that would have led many others to get puffed up or lazy.
Having watched MSNBC for a while today, I have to say that it’s a tribute to the genuine affection his colleagues had for him that they have managed to talk lovingly about him without a single false note, though none of them could have possibly had more than a few moments to prepare.
But much as the tributes to Russert’s professional qualities are warranted, the real tragedy is that a wife, a son, and a father, have so suddenly lost him, without (it appears) even a chance to say good-bye. May they be comforted, and may he rest in peace.

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